Hurricane Patricia’s winds reached a record 215 mph as it roared toward the west coast of Mexico in October, the National Hurricane Center announced Thursday. That’s 15 mph greater than Patricia’s previously thought top speed. It’s the strongest wind speed ever measured in a hurricane in the Western Hemisphere. The record was set while the storm was offshore.
Before it hit land, the storm “weakened” to 150 mph. That still made Patricia the strongest hurricane to ever make landfall in Mexico, the hurricane center said. Patricia hit a sparsely populated part of the country, limiting damage. Two people were killed and 10,000 homes were damaged or destroyed.
In terms of barometric pressure, it was also the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Western Hemisphere and second-strongest recorded anywhere in the world, trailing only Typhoon Tip in 1979. Typically, a lower barometric pressure means a more intense hurricane in terms of its winds and overall destructive potential, according to the Weather Channel. FULL REPORT