Hurricane Aletta grows to Category 4

Hurricane Aletta grows to Category 4

By 9 am local time on Friday, and it had upgraded to category 4 storm with speed of 140 miles per hour winds.

The center said swells generated by Aletta would begin to hit portions of mainland Mexico and the west coast of Baja California Sur and continue through the weekend, likely causing "life-threatening surf and rip current conditions".

As of 9 a.m. MT on Friday, the center of Aletta was located about 815 kilometers (505 miles) southwest of Manzanillo in Mexico. Out in the Pacific, there are two tropical storms we're watching. Hurricane Aletta, which formed early Wednesday, achieved hurricane status on Thursday afternoon after its sustained winds climbed to 120 km/h.

It's too soon to determine whether this second system will eventually pose a direct threat to parts of Baja California next week.

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Aletta was first named a hurricane on Thursday, June 7, which is over two weeks earlier than normal. The average day for the first hurricane to form in the Eastern Pacific is June 26, although hurricanes are not unheard of before that date.

It's not unusual for the Eastern Pacific season's first storm to be a Category 4 hurricane.

However, only one of these "A" hurricanes has reached Category 5 intensity, Hurricane Ava in June 1973, according to NOAA. Aletta should strengthen over the next couple days before weakening back to a tropical storm midday Sunday and a tropical depression midday Tuesday.

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