Hurricane Jimena is very close to becoming a category 5 hurricane, the highest in the Saffir-Simpson scale with sustained winds greater than 155 miles per hour, the National Hurricane Center reported at 5:00 p.m. EST on Monday.

At the time of the report, Jimena was a Category 4 hurricane and its center was located about 305 miles or 495 kilometers south of Cabo San Lucas in Mexico's Baja California Peninsula. It was heading toward the northwest near 10 mph but its speed is expected to accelerate over the next day or so.

A hurricane warning is in effect for the southern portion of the Baja California Peninsula meaning it is expected to hit the area within 24 hours.

Jimena is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 5 to 10 inches over the southern half of the Baja California Peninsula and portions of western Mexico during the next two days, the NHC said. Battering waves and significant coastal flooding along the peninsula were also forecast.


Hurricane Jimena path. (Image: U.S. National Hurricane Center)