MEXICO CITY (AP) — Hurricane Kay lashed Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula with wind and rain as authorities opened shelters and closed some roads.
Kay had maximum sustained winds of 90 mph (150 kph) late Wednesday, with forecasters saying it could bring hurricane-force winds to parts of the peninsula beginning Thursday and possibly brush central Baja on Friday.
Forecasters said there was a chance the outer bands of the big storm could bring heavy rain — and possibly flash floods — to parts of scorched Southern California and southwestern Arizona on Friday night and Saturday.
Forecasters expected Kay to stay offshore as it moved more northward, roughly parallel to the coast. It was an expansive storm, with tropical storm-force winds extending up to 230 miles (370 kilometers) from the center.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Kay was centered about 200 miles (320 kilometers) west of the southern tip of the Baja peninsula late Wednesday. Kay was moving north-northwest at 14 mph (22 kph).
A hurricane warning was issued for a sparsely populated stretch of the peninsula around Bahia Asuncion and the state government of Baja California Sur announced it was opening shelters for people who need to evacuate. It said some creeks were already rising and closed some roads.
Heavy rain fell on Los Cabos at the southern tip of the peninsula. Mayor Oscar Leggs Castro said there were already more than 800 people in shelters in the twin resort destinations.
Long lines of cars waited to fill up at gas stations. Nonessential businesses were closed and some airlines cancelled flights.
Landslides reportedly cut some roadways on the peninsula, but there were no reports of injuries.
Meanwhile, Hurricane Earl churned through open waters in the Atlantic Ocean and was forecast to pass just southeast of Bermuda on Thursday night as a Category 3 storm.
The island’s national security minister, Michael Weeks, told reporters that public services and government offices would keep operating but warned residents to brace for tropical storm conditions.
“Bermuda will certainly feel the effects from Earl, so we must guard against complacency,” he said.
Earl was centered about 355 miles (570 kilometers) south of Bermuda late Wednesday. Its maximum sustained winds had strengthened to 100 mph (155 kph) and it was moving north at 9 mph (15 kph).
Farther east, Hurricane Danielle was slowly weakening far out over open waters some 605 miles (975 kilometers) north-northwest of the Azores. It had maximum sustained winds of 75 mph (120 kph).