Katia Strengthens with Strong Winds and Rains off Mexico

Current Storm Status

Mexican authorities are preparing for the impact of Hurricane Katia, which could affect over a million people as it rumbles towards the state of Veracruz from the Gulf of Mexico.

As of its 2 a.m. advisory, the National Hurricane Center said Katia was 180 miles east-southeast of Tampico, Mexico, and 165 miles north-northeast of Veracruz, Mexico.

Katia has moved into Mexico, now as a Tropical Storm packing 45 miles per hour winds. The storm was expected to weaken rapidly over the next day, the NHC said.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto has warned on Thursday of the great danger of Katia for those areas recently damaged by a major natural disaster in Mexico in a century. Storms of Category 3 and above are defined as major hurricanes.

Mexico is dealing with the aftermath of a huge quake that struck on Thursday night, and President Enrique Pena Nieto said on Friday that Katia could be especially unsafe in hillsides rocked by the magnitude 8.1 tremor.

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Officials in Veracruz said Katia could cause landslides and flooding, and urged people living below hills and slopes to be prepared to evacuate.

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for St. Martin, Sint Maarten and St. Barthelemy, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Meanwhile, Mexico is dealing with the aftermath of a powerful quake on Thursday night.

Hurricane Irma, one of the most powerful Atlantic storms in a century and a Category 5, spread devastation in Saint Martin, where it killed eight people, and Barbuda in the Caribbean as it took aim at Florida.

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