After making a rare crossover into the Pacific Ocean from the Caribbean, Hurricane Bonnie powered up Tuesday to a Category 3 storm as it made its way along Mexico's southern coast.
Forecasters said the hurricane will pose no direct threat to land as it heads generally west farther into the Pacific. But the National Hurricane Center warned that swells generated by Bonnie will affect portions of the coasts of southern and southwestern Mexico during the next day or two.
"These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions," the hurricane center said.
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Bonnie had maximum sustained winds of 115 mph late Tuesday afternoon, which makes it a Category 3 "major" hurricane. It's the first major hurricane of the 2022 eastern Pacific hurricane season.
As of 5 p.m. EDT, it was centered 340 miles south of Cabo Corrientes, Mexico, and was moving west-northwest at 15 mph.
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The storm caused heavy flooding while crossing sodden Nicaragua over the weekend after making landfall as a tropical storm on the country’s Caribbean coast late Friday.
Two people were killed in separate events related to flooding, Nicaragua’s army said in a statement.
Why Bonnie not Darby?
Because the storm's circulation remained intact and did not fall apart over Central America, the hurricane center continued to use the storm name Bonnie rather than give it the next name on the 2022 Eastern Pacific hurricane season's list (Darby), AccuWeather said.
This is the first crossover storm since November 2016, when Hurricane Otto's circulation remained intact as it traveled over Costa Rica and emerged into the Eastern Pacific as a tropical storm.
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"There have been close to 20 officially recognized crossover storms – meaning they tracked in both the Eastern Pacific and the Atlantic basins. Another 20 or so storms may have crossed over but were never officially recognized as such," AccuWeather senior weather editor Jesse Ferrell said.
The next name on the list of Atlantic Basin storms is Danielle. According to the hurricane center, "no new tropical cyclones are expected in the Atlantic Basin within the next five days."
Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Hurricane Bonnie path nears Mexico's Pacific Coast as Category 3 storm