June 12, 2014 8:37 am
Updated: June 12, 2014 8:38 am

Hurricane Cristina strengthens to a major Category 4 storm

NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured this infrared view of Hurricane Cristina on June 11 at 8 a.m. EDT off the west coast of Mexico.


MIAMI – Hurricane Cristina has rapidly strengthened to a major Category 4 storm off Mexico’s Pacific coast.

The hurricane’s maximum sustained winds increased to near 230 kph Thursday morning. The hurricane reached Category 4 strength just hours after becoming a Category 3 storm.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says some additional strengthening is possible during the day but weakening is expected to begin Thursday night.

Cristina is centred about 400 kilometres southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico, and is moving west-northwest near 13 kph.

There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect, but forecasters say swells generated by the hurricane are affecting parts of Mexico’s southwest coast and could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.

© 2014 The Canadian Press

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