Update: 5:16 a.m. EDT -- Hurricane Patricia, which hit Mexico Friday night, was downgraded to a Category 1 hurricane early Saturday, the Associated Press reported. The hurricane’s maximum sustained winds early Saturday had decreased to about 75 miles per hour, according to AP.
Patricia, which made landfall as a Category 5 hurricane, is currently centered about south-southwest of Zacatecas, Mexico, and is moving north-northeast at about 21 mph.
Meanwhile, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said that Patricia posed a floods and landslides threat. However, the president added that the most powerful storm recorded in the Americans ever, caused less than expected damage, the BBC reported.
Hurricane Patricia has weakened to a Category 2 hurricane and is expected to become a tropical storm Saturday, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in an advisory. The center, however, said that Patricia was “still strong” and a major hurricane over southwestern Mexico.
A tropical storm warning was in effect from Playa Perula in Jalisco state to Lazaro Cardenas in Michoacán.
Patricia was moving toward the north-northeast about 20 miles per hour and was expected to move further into southwestern Mexico through Saturday. Maximum sustained winds decreased to about 100 mph with higher gusts, NHC’s advisory stated. Hurricane-force winds went up to 35 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds up to 140 miles, according to the advisory.
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A total rainfall of 10.25 inches was recorded at Nevado De Colima in Jalisco state for the past 24 hours, according to NHC. The hurricane was likely to accompany 8 to 12 inches of rain, with 20 inches in parts of the Mexican states of Nayarit, Jalisco, Colima, Michoacan, and Guerrero through Saturday. The downpour could possibly cause life-threatening flash floods and mudslides, NHC stated.
Waves of 6 to 8 meters were expected along southern coast of Jalisco state, the Red Cross in Jalisco tweeted. Swells caused by Patricia are likely to impact the country's southwestern coast through Sunday and cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions, according to NHC.
Patricia, the strongest hurricane ever recorded, made landfall as a Category 5 hurricane on Mexico’s Pacific coast Friday night. It hit the coast of southwestern Mexico as a Category 5 hurricane, making it capable of causing catastrophic wind damage. People were evacuated to shelters in the coastline as extreme winds whipped palm trees and torrential rain soaked the area.
Patricia’s effect was also seen on the south-central states of America. Corsicana in Texas received 13.95 inches of rain past 24 hours and over 5,000 flights were delayed across the U.S. Friday, AccuWeather.com reported. Life-threatening floods from Texas to Louisiana were expected over the weekend, according to the weather forecast website. Parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana will receive 4 to 5 inches of rain.