Astonishing meets record-breaking. Category five Hurricane Patricia exceeded all odds early Friday morning, with a Hurricane Hunter aircraft recording maximum sustained winds of 185 MPH and a minimum central pressure of 892 millibars. By air pressure, this is now the strongest storm ever recorded in the eastern Pacific, and it ties with 1997’s Hurricane Linda as the basin’s strongest storm by one-minute sustained wind speed.
Latest dropsondes suggest min pressure down to 880-881 mb. Surface winds 190-200 mph. #Patricia perhaps the strongest hurricane ever seen.— Michael Lowry (@MichaelRLowry) October 23, 2015
The hurricane is on a collision course for western Mexico, with an anticipated landfall between Manzanillo and Puerto Vallarta on Friday evening. The scariest thing about the forecast is that, as of 1:30 AM EDT, the National Hurricane Center expects the storm to maintain its ferocious intensity through landfall.