Miami, Fl. (Florida News Network)- At 1100 PM EDT, the center of Hurricane Delta was located near latitude 19.5 North, longitude 85.1 West. Delta is about 135 miles east-southeast of Cozumel Mexico, moving toward the west-northwest near 16 mph. A west-northwestward to northwestward motion is expected over the next day or so. A slower northwestward to north-northwestward motion is forecast to begin on Thursday, and a northward motion is expected Thursday night and Friday.
On the forecast track, the center of Delta will move over the northeastern portion of the Yucatan Peninsula early Wednesday. Delta is forecast to move over the southern Gulf of Mexico Wednesday afternoon, be over the southern or central Gulf of Mexico through Thursday, and approach the northern Gulf coast on Friday.
Maximum sustained winds are near 130 mph with higher gusts. Delta is a category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Little change in strength is expected before the center reaches the coast of the Yucatan peninsula early Wednesday. Although some weakening is likely when Delta moves over the Yucatan peninsula, re-strengthening is forecast when the hurricane moves over the southern Gulf of Mexico Wednesday night and Thursday.
Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 30 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 105 miles NOAA buoy 42056 recently measured a sustained wind of 65 mph and a gust to 76 mph.
The estimated minimum central pressure is 960 mb (28.35 inches).
Later this week, Delta is expected to produce 4 to 8 inches of rain, with isolated maximum totals of 12 inches, over portions of the central Gulf Coast. These rainfall amounts may lead to flash, urban and minor river flooding. Heavy rainfall will eventually spread into the Tennessee Valley, and interior southeastern United States as well.
Data and graphic credit: National Hurricane Center