Richard slogs into Belize, Yucatan
Tropical Storm Richard grew to Cat. 1 hurricane proportions earlier today, and is now headed ashore in Honduras, Belize and the Mexican Yucatan Peninsula.
The 10th hurricane of the season was moving ashore near Belize city in what was once British Honduras - now Belize. It was packing top sustained winds of 90 mph, with hurricane-force winds extending 15 miles from the center of this small stor. Tropical storm-force winds were being felt more than 100 miles from the center.
But wind is not the most dangerous part of this storm. Richard is also sending a 3- to 5-foot storm surge ashore near and north of the storm's center, with battering waves. Rain totals of 3 to 5 inches will be common, with some locations seeing as much as 10 inches. Landslides and flash floods could claim lives and property.
The storm is forecast to weaken to a tropical depression by the time it emerges into the Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday. Wind shear there is expected to prevent the storm from re-intensifying over the warm Gulf waters.