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Season's 1st tropical storm forms in eastern Pacific

09 June 2018

The east Pacific hurricane season, which starts on May 15 each year, has its first official hurricane.

Aletta has rapidly intensified into the hemisphere's first major hurricane for 2018 as the storm hits maximum sustained winds of up to 140 miles per hour, The Weather Channel reported. It was upgraded to a Category 3 storm on Friday.

The center of the storm was located about 455 miles west-southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico. In 2017, the basin saw 18 named storms, 9 of which become hurricanes, with 4 classified as major storms (category 3 or higher).

Hurricane Aletta has quickly intensified in the eastern Pacific Ocean, but still poses no direct threat to Mexico or the United States.

Churning over warm waters that can provide fuel and with relatively little wind shear to disrupt its towering thunderstorms, "there are no obvious reasons why Aletta should cease intensification", the National Hurricane Center said.

However, over the weekend, the storm is forecast to steadily decay. If the disturbance earns a name, it will be called Bud. The NHC said it's too early to tell whether the second system will pose a threat to the Pacific coast next week. The average day for the first hurricane to form in the Eastern Pacific is June 26, although hurricanes are not unheard of before that date.

Season's 1st tropical storm forms in eastern Pacific