Hurricane Rina Heads for Cancun: Strengthens to Category 2 Storm

Hurricane Rina Gains Momentum, Expected to Hit Mayan Riviera

Atlantic Hurricane Rina, with winds increasing to 105 mph, is gathering momentum as it heads towards the highly tourist coastal community of Cancun, Mexico.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the hurricane’s eye, or center, sat 280 miles southeast of mainland Mexico.

“Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 15 miles and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 115 miles,” said CBS Miami.

Rina is the sixth hurricane of the 2011 Atlantic Hurricane season. Although Americans expressed fear of the natural disaster after Atlantic Hurricane Katrina hit the U.S. coast in 2005, weather experts predicted Rina would mostly affect Mexico.

According to USA Today, various resorts and cruise ships are catering to the unyielding and unpredictable moves of the hurricane, which is expected to gain its most strength on Wednesday night before it makes its way through Mexico’s main tourist vein, the Mayan Riviera.

“We are letting those with a reservation know they will have to change their dates,” Laura Valles, receptionist at Hotel Jashita in coastal Tulum told USA Today.

Mexico’s authorities have set up shelters, which are expected to hold 200,000 people.

The hurricane is also expected to hit Cozumel, an island off the eastern coast of the Yucatan Peninsula.

The hurricane is currently swirling in between Cuba and Belize in the Caribbean.

A category two hurricane is strong enough to lift a house and blow down windows and doors.

According to the U.S. National Hurricane Center, Rina is expected to become a major hurricane very soon. Those living in the hurricane’s path are being told to prepare evacuation kits and board up windows, although currently no evacuation orders have been implemented.