Cancun, Q.R. – Tropical Storm Earl was upgraded to hurricane status on Wednesday hours before making landfall.
Hurricane Earl made landfall in the early hours of Thursday morning just south of Belize City. The Category 1 hurricane hit at around 2:00 a.m. EDT with an estimated maximum sustained winds of 80 mph.
Moving forward, the main concern for other areas will be flooding while hurricane warnings continue for the Belize coast, northward to Puerto Costa, Mexico. For the time being, tropical storm warnings have been extended northward to include Punta Allen, Mexico but not Cozumel or Cancun.
Rainfall warnings of 8 to 12 inches are possible along Earl’s path in Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and southern Mexico, including the Yucatan Peninsula. Mudslides and flash flooding are also possible in these areas throughout the weekend.
Earl was the first hurricane to land in the western Caribbean Sea west of Jamaica since Ernesto nearly four years ago.