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Hurricane Willa Becomes a Category 5 as It Approaches Mexico

Willa, the 23rd named storm in the Pacific this year, became a Category 5 storm Monday morning. And it’s about to slam hard into Mexico.

The National Hurricane Center predicts a life-threatening storm surge will hit Tuesday “along the coasts of the Isla Marias, and west-central and southwestern Mexico” near the storm’s path.

“Slight weakening is forecast to begin on Tuesday, but Willa is expected to be an extremely dangerous major hurricane when it reaches the coast of Mexico,” said forecasters.

Willa had maximum sustained winds of 160 mph as of 11 a.m. ET Monday. There may be a total of 6 to 12 inches of rainfall, and life-threatening flash flooding and landslides are also expected.

A tropical storm warning was in effect for Playa Perula to San Blas and north of Mazatlan to Bahia Tempehuaya.

Willa’s could hit the lower tip of Texas as a tropical depression by Thursday, but isn’t expected to have any substantial impact on the United States.