Tropical Storm Bud now a Hurricane

It is now official: the tropical storm which has been meandering over 150 miles off Mexico’s coast is now a hurricane, named Bud. Top winds with hurricane Bud are around 110 miles per hour, making it a Category 3 hurricane which is a major storm.

Bud is forecast to fluctuate in strength through Friday morning before weakening. Even though the hurricane is going to grow weaker, it is still set to reach the Mexican coastline as a hurricane by late Friday or early Saturday. In light of this, a hurricane warning has been put into effect for portions of the Mexican coastline as Bud could cause some damage within the next day or two.

Bud is forecast to dump heavy rainfall in and around the port city of Manzanillo Friday
. The hurricane also could hit near the very popular tourist town of Puerto Vallarta. Up to twelve inches of rain could fall on some areas, raising the chance for flash flooding and landslides. Every Mexican port on the Pacific coastline remained operational Thursday afternooon as the storm was still well off-shore.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or NOAA predicts a less-active hurricane season for 2012 compared to recent years. However, in spite of the outlook, the Administration is reminding anyone living or vacationing in hurricane-prone areas that they should be prepared for the possibility of a large hurricane strike.

The official start to the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season is the first of June. Forecasters are predicting that there is a good chance this season will have between nine to fifteen storms with wind speeds of at least 39 miles per hour. Of those, one to three are expected to develop into Category 3 or stronger. Cat 3 hurricanes have winds of at least 111 miles per hour.

NOAA is reminding people who live in hurricane-prone areas to stay informed and to be prepared. It’s advisable to have an emergency kit on hand and to make a family communications plan. It’s also essential to know your community’s evacuation routes and to come up with a place to meet if family members are not together. Pets also need to be taken into consideration as do elderly family members. Homeowners should check their insurance coverage as flood damage is not typically covered by homeowner’s insurance.

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