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Pacific hurricane season heats up with several storms but no threats to Hawaii

  • COURTESY NOAA

    This enhanced color satellite image shows three tropical storms in the East Pacific and three potential storms in the Central Pacific today.

  • COURTESY CENTRAL PACIFIC HURRICANE CENTER

    Forecasters in Honolulu are watching three weather storms in the Central Pacific, far from Hawaii. The first two systems have a 20 percent and 50 percent of forming into a cyclone in the next two days, while the third system has a 20 percent chance of formation within five days.

  • COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

    Three tropical storms are churning in the East Pacific today.

  • COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

Update: 5 p.m.

Tropical Storm Kiko continued to weaken today in the East Pacific, though it could strengthen again on Wednesday and become a hurricane by late Friday.

Kiko, with winds near 50 mph, is 1,700 miles east-southeast of Hilo and moving toward the southwest near 5 mph. It is expected to turn toward the west-southwest and west by Thursday and toward the west-northwest on Friday.

A tropical storm warning has been issued in Mexico’s west coast ahead of Tropical Storm Lorena. Tropical storm conditions are expected within 36 hours for Zihuatanejo to Cabo Corrientes.

Tropical Storm Mario, located 670 miles from southern tip of Baja California, continues to move northwestward with no threat to land.

12:40 p.m.

The recently quiet 2019 Pacific hurricane season is heating up with three tropical storms in the East Pacific, and three potential storms in the Central Pacific, although none are a threat to Hawaii.

As of late this morning, tropical storms Kiko, Lorena and Mario were churning in the East Pacific. Kiko, which is closest to the Central Pacific and slowly moving west, weakened from a Category 1 hurricane earlier today, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

At 11 a.m., Kiko had maximum sustained winds of 60 mph and was centered about 1,070 miles west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California and under 2,000 miles east-southeast of Hilo, moving west-southwest at 5 mph.

Kiko is expected to grow back into a hurricane later this week, but it’s still projected to be in the East Pacific, far from the islands, by Sunday.

Closer to Mexico, Lorena and Mario formed today with Lorena threatening the country’s west coast with high surf, strong winds and heavy rain. A tropical storm warning has been issued for the southwest coast of Mexico.

Mario could be a hurricane later this week, moving northwest far off the Mexican coast, forecasters said.

South of Hawaii, meanwhile, forecasters with the Central Pacific Hurricane Center in Honolulu are monitoring three systems, one of which has a 50 percent chance of developing into a tropical cyclone within two days.

Forecasters said late this morning that “showers and thunderstorms associated with an area of low pressure about 550 miles southwest of Honolulu have become better organized over the past 12 hours. Environmental conditions are expected to be marginally conducive for some development over the next 24 hours as the system moves toward the northwest.”

By Thursday, however, “conditions will become less conducive for development,” they said. “Regardless of development, this system is expected to bring locally gusty winds and heavy rain to portions of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument over the next several days.”

The two other Central Pacific weather systems being monitored are far to the southwest and southeast of Hawaii and each have a 20 percent chance of forming into a cyclone over the next five days, forecasters said.

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Kiko barely maintained it’s hurricane status and is expected to weaken into a tropical storm today in the East Pacific, one of three storms in the region being monitored by the National Hurricane Center.

At 5 a.m. today, Kiko has maximum sustained winds of 75 mph, was located 1,060 miles west-southwest of Baja California and about 1,975 miles southeast of Hilo, and was moving west-southwest at 5 mph. Forecasters said that hurricane-force winds extend up to 15 miles from Kiko’s center while tropical storm-force winds extend up to 60 miles.

The storm is expected to weaken today and strengthen back to a Category 1 hurricane by Thursday. But by the end of the week, Kiko is expected to weaken back to a tropical storm as it approaches the Central Pacific.

The hurricane center in Miami is also monitoring Tropical Storm Lorena, which formed overnight just south of Mexico, and tropical depression 14-E, also south of Mexico.

Closer to Hawaii, the Central Hurricane Center in Honolulu is monitoring three weather systems far from the state. Two of the systems have a 20 percent chance of developing into a tropical cyclone in the next five days, while the third has 40 percent chance, forecasters said.

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