Hurricane Sandra strengthens to Category 4 off the Mexican Pacific coast

Acknowledged as the strongest Eastern Pacific hurricane observed so late in the year,  fast-strengthening Hurricane Sandra is already making East Pacific history about 700 miles south of Cabo San Lucas.

Declared a hurricane on Tuesday Nov. 24, Sandra has strengthened to a powerful Category 4 storm in the eastern Pacific off Mexico’s coast.

The hurricane’s maximum sustained winds increased to near 145 mph early Thursday Nov. 26.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says no significant change in strength is expected but weakening should begin Friday.

Sandra is centered about 500 miles southwest of Cabo Corrientes, Mexico, and is moving north near 12 mph. It is expected to make landfall on mainland Mexico early Saturday morning.