Aug. 22, 2007 The National Hurricane Center reported that Hurricane Dean made landfall around 4:30 a.m. EDT, Tuesday, August 21, 2007 about 35 miles north of the city of Chetumal in Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Although the spot where Dean's eye made landfall is rural, and not very populated, Dean came ashore as a Category 5 hurricane, packing maximum sustained winds of 165 mph.
At 8:00 a.m. EDT, Dean, a large Category Three hurricane, almost the size of Texas, had maximum sustained winds of 125 mph (205 km/hr) while moving over the Yucatan Peninsula. His eye was located near latitude 18.9 degrees north and longitude 88.7 degrees west or about 40 miles (60 kilometers (km)) northwest of Chetumal, Mexico and about 135 miles (220 km) east-southeast of Campeche, Mexico. The estimated minimum central pressure is 935 millibars.
NASA's CloudSat Satellite Gets a Sideways View of Dean
Scientists now have the ability to see what a hurricane looks like sideways, thanks to NASA's CloudSat Satellite. CloudSat's Cloud Profiling Radar captured these profiles of Hurricane Dean on August 17 and August 19 as he was heading toward the Yucatan.
Where Is Dean Headed?
Dean is moving west-northwest near 20 mph (32 km/hr) and is expected to move on a west-northwestward to westward motion through Tuesday and Tuesday night. On the forecast track, Dean's center will reach the southern Bay of Campeche late Tuesday afternoon and still remain a hurricane.
A hurricane watch is in effect for the Gulf coast of Mexico from north of Veracruz to Tampico. A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 36 hours. Interests elsewhere in the southern Gulf of Mexico should closely monitor the progress of Dean.
What Conditions are Expected?
The National Hurricane Center noted in its 8:00 a.m. EDT report, "Storm surge flooding and waves will gradually diminish along the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula today. Within the hurricane warning area in the Bay of Campeche, storm surge flooding of 6 to 8 feet above normal tide levels is possible, along with large and dangerous battering waves."
Dean is expected to produce storm total rainfall of 5 to 10 inches over the Isthmus of Tehuantepec and Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, and northern Honduras with maximum amounts of up to 20 inches. These rains could cause life-threatening flash floods and mud slides.
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