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Mexico

Hurricane Jimena poses threat to Baja California

August 31, 2009|Times Wire Reports

Jimena developed into a dangerous Category 4 hurricane off Mexico's Pacific coast, and forecasters said it could hit the Baja California peninsula as a major storm this week.

If Jimena stays on its northwestern track, it would carry hurricane-force winds to the tip of resort-dotted Baja California by late today and slam into the peninsula by Wednesday morning, said Richard Pasch, a senior specialist with the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

Pasch said Jimena's path "is subject to some uncertainty" and that it is difficult to predict exactly how strong the storm will be when it nears Baja. "I think it's going to be a substantial hurricane by the time it approaches," he said.

Jimena had maximum sustained winds near 140 mph and was moving west-northwest at 8 mph. It was centered about 270 miles south of Cabo Corrientes, a coastal town in the western state of Jalisco. Authorities in Cabo Corrientes were setting up shelters in case of heavier wind and rain, said an official.

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