Franklin is still holding on to a Tropical Storm status as of the latest updates. It has already made landfall across the Yucatan Peninsula. Heavy rain and gusty winds have already affected the region. But it’s not over yet. Now Franklin is preparing for 2nd landfall and this time it may gain hurricane strength.
Franklin has emerged officially over the Bay of Campeche and in coming hours it set to strengthen and potentially become a hurricane as it has back into very warm ocean water.
Franklin made landfall early Tuesday some 350 kilometers (215 miles) south of the beach resort of Cancun and was advancing to the northwest at 20 kilometers per hour, according to the US National Hurricane Center (NHC).
It was set to finish crossing the peninsula later Tuesday and enter the Gulf of Mexico, where it could strengthen — possibly into a hurricane — before crashing back into the Mexican coastline.
The storm’s second landfall is expected Wednesday night or early Thursday, to the north of the major port city of Veracruz, according to forecasts.
A hurricane watch was in effect along the Mexican coast from Veracruz to Tuxpan. A tropical storm warning was posted from Veracruz east to Celestun and from Tuxpan north to Rio Panuco. Tropical storm-force winds extended up to 185 miles (295 kilometers) from the center.
Mexico Civil Protection director Ricardo de la Cruz said Tuesday that the storm’s impact on Yucatan was not as bad as initially feared, with some trees down and power out in some areas. But, he warned, “The second impact could even be stronger than the first.”
Forecasters said Franklin’s rains could cause flash floods and mudslides in the mountains of central Mexico. Four to eight inches (10 to 20 centimeters) of rain was forecast for mainland areas in the storm’s path, with localized amounts of up to 12 inches (35 centimeters).