Hurricane Emilia packs the biggest punch of 2012 season
Hurricane Emilia has swelled to a Category 4 hurricane, the first major hurricane of this season. Hurricane Emilia, 700 miles southwest of Baja California, is expected to go out to sea.
Within 24 hours of becoming a hurricane, Hurricane Emilia has rapidly strengthened into a major Category 4 storm, making it the strongest storm of the hurricane season so far.
Emilia first formed as a tropical storm on Saturday night, and strengthened into a hurricane early yesterday morning (July 9). It then rapidly gained Category 2 strength on the Saffir-Simpson scale and as of this morning had strengthened further into a Category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 140 mph (220 kph).
The hurricane is located 680 miles (1,100 kilometers) south-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California and is heading further out into the ocean, posing no threat to land.
Emilia's strength could fluctuate over the course of the day, according to the latest updated from the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla., but the storm is expected to begin a gradual weakening Tuesday night that will last through Thursday.