Tropical Storm Julia strengthened into a hurricane Saturday near several Colombian islands and was headed toward Nicaragua, the National Hurricane Center reported in its 8:00 p.m. EDT bulletin.
Hurricane #Julia Advisory 10A: Center of Julia Passing San Andres and Heading For the Coast of Nicaragua. Life-Threatening Flash Floods and Mudslides Possible From Heavy Rains Over Central America and Southern Mexico Through Early Next Week. https://t.co/tW4KeFW0gB— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) October 8, 2022
Hurricane Julia was about 20 miles west-southwest of San Andres, a Colombian island, at 8 p.m. Saturday, with maximum sustained winds of 75 miles per hour, and about 125 miles east-northeast of Bluefields, a municipality in the east coast of Nicaragua, the National Hurricane Center said.
The NHC warned that the rains discharged by the fifth hurricane of this season in the Atlantic can cause flooding and landslides in several Central American countries and in southern Mexico .
Once the center of Julia passes near the Colombian archipelago of San Andres, Providencia and Santa Catalina, the hurricane will reach Nicaragua tonight.
After crossing that country, it will travel near the Nicaraguan Pacific coast and those of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala on Sunday.
San Andres, Providencia and Santa Catalina, in Colombia, and the Nicaraguan Caribbean coast, from Bluefields to Puerto Cabezas, are under a hurricane alert.
The hurricane is forecast to strengthen before reaching Nicaragua and to weaken once it has entered inland.
Julia will weaken to a tropical depression on Monday and dissipate later that evening.
In addition to rain and wind, Hurricane Julia will generate a storm surge that can raise sea levels up to 4 feet (1.2 meters) and rip currents.