Tropical storm Michael becomes hurricane in Gulf of Mexico
Tropical storm Michael, currently located off Mexico's Caribbean coast, has grown in intensity and danger to become a Category 1 hurricane, said the Mexican National Meteorological Service (SMN) on Monday, Xinhua reported.
According to the SMN, at 10 a.m. Monday morning (15:00 GMT) Michael was located some 200 kilometers east of the tourist resort of Cancun, in the state of Quintana Roo, presenting winds of 120 to 150 kilometers per hour.
The Quintana Roo government suspended schools along its coast on Monday, while the SMN has warned that Michael may also generate storms in the neighboring states of Yucatan and Campeche.
The Mexican Navy has activated plans in three southeastern states, where military personnel are ready to assist potential evacuations ahead of heavy rains.
In Cuba, the government announced a hurricane warning in the western provinces of Pinar del Rio and Isla de la Juventud on Monday morning.
A hurricane alert was also established for other western areas including Artemisa, Mayabeque and the capital Havana, where heavy rains and severe local storms are predicted.
"Taking into account the rapid evolution of this weather event and its proximity to our country ... the Information Phase is established," said Cuba's National Civil Defense.
The agency also announced a warning for central areas of Cuba, saying that flooding is a possibility.
According to the SMN, Michael will reach Category 2 power on Monday night.
Michael will become a Category 3 hurricane, with wind speeds between 178 to 208 kilometers per hour, by Tuesday morning, when it will still be located in the Gulf of Mexico.
Michael will then continue towards the United States decreasing in power as it moves, and will likely reach Florida as a tropical storm, said the SMN.