Published: Sat, June 09, 2018
Sci-tech | By Brandy Patterson

Aletta expected to become first 2018 hurricane in Pacific

Aletta expected to become first 2018 hurricane in Pacific

Hurricane Aletta rapidly intensified on Friday morning, becoming a major category four hurricane as it moved further away from Mexico's Pacific coast, forecasters said.

Aletta is the first hurricane of the 2018 season in the eastern Pacific. It could grow into a Category 4 sometime Friday. It had 75-mph maximum sustained winds and was moving west-northwest at 6 miles per hour, the NHC's 5 p.m. EDT update said. Meteorologist Travis Herzog says June is typically a quiet month in the Atlantic with 90% of all hurricane activity normally occurring after August 10th.

Forecasters said the hurricane may gain more intensity before a combination of increased wind shear and decreasing ocean heat will cause Aletta to break down.

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Forecasters expect the storm to make a turn toward the northwest over the weekend before a westerly turn Sunday or Monday.

The center said Aletta is likely to become a hurricane by Thursday as it moves westward into the Pacific.

The Weather Channel reported the average date when the first named storm forms in the Eastern Pacific Basin is June 10, according to NHS data from 1971 to 2009.

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While it may seem unusual for the Pacific's first storm to be so strong, meteorologist Jonathan Erdman discovered it's not all that uncommon.

To the southeast of Aletta, another area of disturbed weather is forecast to become a tropical depression or storm in the next 48 hours. If the disturbance earns a name, it will be called Bud. Computer models suggest moisture from this system could get drawn up into the Desert Southwest late next week feeding afternoon showers and storms.

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