Today’s Image of the Day from NASA Earth Observatory features Hurricane Agatha in the eastern Pacific Ocean. On May 30, 2022, the storm struck western Mexico near Puerto Escondido with maximum sustained winds of 105 miles per hour.
This is an unusually early time of the year for a storm of this strength to emerge in the eastern Pacific. In fact, Hurricane Agatha is the strongest May hurricane to make landfall along the Pacific coast of Mexico since modern record keeping began in 1949, according to the National Hurricane Center.
“Agatha brought intense downpours and howling winds to several tourist beaches and fishing towns in an otherwise sparsely populated region before weakening rapidly as it moved northward over the mountainous terrain of southern Mexico,” reports NASA.
“Prevailing trade winds typically steer west and out to sea, but in this case a low-pressure trough dipped far enough south to pull Agatha toward land, reported meteorologist Jeff Masters for Yale Climate Connections. Hurricane forecasters are watching the possibility that Agatha’s remnants will become more organized and strengthen over the Gulf of Mexico as they move toward Florida.”
“NOAA and other federal and state agencies lead the task of forecasting and responding to hurricanes in the United States, with NASA playing a supporting role in developing experimental tools and providing key data to those agencies.”
The image was captured on May 30, 2022 by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the NOAA-20 satellite.
Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory