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Small but powerful Hurricane Felicia expected to weaken Sunday, far from Hawaii

  • COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER
                                The 5-day forecast for Tropical Storm Guillermo as of 11 p.m. today.

    COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

    The 5-day forecast for Tropical Storm Guillermo as of 11 p.m. today.

  • COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER
                                The 5-day forecast for Hurricane Felicia as of 11 p.m. today.

    COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

    The 5-day forecast for Hurricane Felicia as of 11 p.m. today.

  • COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER
                                The location of Hurricane Felicia as of 11 a.m. today.

    COURTESY NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

    The location of Hurricane Felicia as of 11 a.m. today.

UPDATE, 11 p.m.

Hurricane Felicia remained as a Category 4 storm in the East Pacific tonight but is expected to weaken in the coming days.

Felicia, with winds at 140 mph, is located 1,230 miles west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California. Slight weakening is expected Sunday, followed by a faster rate of weakening on Monday and Tuesday.

Felicia is moving toward the west-northwest near 10 mph. A westward motion is expected Sunday, followed by a turn to the west-southwest on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Guillermo is about 380 miles south-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California.

Guillermo, with winds increasing to 50 mph, is moving toward the west-northwest at 12 mph. A turn to the west is expected Sunday and this general motion should continue for a few days.

Guillermo is expected to continue strengthening but a weakening trend should begin Monday night.

6 p.m.

Hurricane Felicia, a major Category4 storm far off in the East Pacific, is moving west-northwest at nearly 9 mph, but is expected to weaken to a tropical depression next week when it enters the Central Pacific, hundreds of miles from Hawaii.

At 5 p.m. today, the storm was 1,927 miles east-southeast of Hilo and 1,180 miles west-southwest from the southern tip of Baja California, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

The small but powerful hurricane’s maximum sustained winds decreased slightly to 140 mph this afternoon. A slight decrease in wind speeds is forecast through the weekend, and a faster rate of weakening is expected starting Monday, forecasters said.

The storm is expected to turn toward the west by late Sunday and then west-southwest early next week, moving it far south of Hawaii.

Felicia is described as a “very small hurricane,” with hurricane-force winds extending up to 15 miles from the center and tropical storm-force winds extending 45 miles. Its size could weaken the hurricane “fairly quickly” by Tuesday, according to the hurricane center.

The storm posed no threat to land, and at the end of the current five-day forecast period, the storm is expected to be a tropical depression with maximum sustained winds under 39 mph.

Further to the east, Tropical Storm Guillermo has changed little over the last few hours and remains unorganized, the center’s forecasters said.

At 5 p.m., it was about 380 miles south-southwest from the southern tip of Baja California. Its maximum sustained winds were 40 mph, and it was moving west-northwest at 13 mph away from southern Mexico. It is expected to turn to the west on Sunday and should continue that way for a few days.

A gradual strengthening is expected over the next day or so, and a general weakening trend should begin by Monday night, forecasters said. Its tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles from the center. A gradual strengthening is expected over the next 36 hours.

11:01 a.m.

A tropical depression has strengthened into Tropical Storm Guillermo off the southwestern coast of Mexico.

Forecasters said the tropical storm was located about 400 miles south of the southern tip of Baja, Calif., and about 130 miles south-southeast of the Socorro Island of Mexico.

Guillermo was heading west-northwest near 14 mph and was expected to continue in the same motion today. The tropical storm is forecast to move west later tonight and continue in the same direction through Tuesday.

“On the forecast track, Guillermo will move farther away from mainland Mexico and the Baja California peninsula over the next several days,” forecasters said.

Guillermo was packing maximum sustained winds of near 40 mph with higher gusts. Forecasters said the storm will gradually strengthen over the next few days.

Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward of up to 70 miles northeast from the center.

10:48 a.m.

Felicia is maintaining its strength as it remains a Category 4 hurricane and moves west-northwest at nearly 8 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

Hurricane Felicia was located about 1,145 miles west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja, Calif., and packing maximum sustained winds of 145 mph with higher gusts.

Felicia is expected to continue west-northwest today through early Sunday and make a turn toward west-southwest early next week. Felicia will possibly fluctuate in intensity today and slightly weaken by the end of this weekend. Forecasters said Felicia is expected to weaken faster by early next week.

As a “very small hurricane,” Felicia’s hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 15 miles from the center as tropical-storm-force winds expand outward up to 45 mph.

The next update is expected at 5 p.m.

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Now a Category 4 hurricane, Felicia continued on a westward trek as it approaches the Central Pacific. Forecasters called Felicia a “tiny but ferocious” hurricane.

Packing maximum sustained winds of near 145 mph, Felicia was located far southeast of the Hawaiian islands and about 1,120 miles west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja, Calif., heading west at 8 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami. Felicia is expected to continue on this course today, possibly turning to the west-northwest late tonight or Sunday then turn back west late Sunday or Monday.

The National Weather Service in Honolulu tweeted, “High pressure north of the islands will support breezy trade winds through the weekend. Low clouds will move over the islands from the east, occasionally dropping showers over windward areas, with increased showers expected to move in later tonight.”

As a strong hurricane, Felicia is expected to fluctuate in intensity today then slowly weaken by the end of the weekend, forecasters said. By early next week, forecasters predict Felicia will weaken at an even faster rate.

Hurricane-force winds extend up to 15 miles from Felicia’s center and tropical storm-force winds extend up to 45 miles.

Meanwhile, a new tropical depression has formed offshore the southwestern coast of Mexico. Tropical Depression Seven-E was located about 425 miles south of the southern tip of Baja, Calif., with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph.

Seven-E was moving toward the west-northwest near 17 mph and expected to continue in the same motion today then move toward the west later tonight with the same motion through Tuesday. “On the forecast track, the depression will move farther away from mainland Mexico and the Baja California peninsula over the next several days,” forecasters said.

Seven-E was packing maximum sustained winds of near 35 mph with higher gusts. Forecasters said Seven-E is expected to strengthen gradually and become a tropical storm later today.

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