The National Hurricane Center in Miami says Hurricane Paloma has made landfall in southern Cuba as a Category 4 storm. Senior Hurricane Specialist Stacy Stewart told The Associated Press that the storm reached southern Cuba near Santa Cruz del Sur at about 6 p.m. EST. He says the storm will now spend several hours crossing Cuba on a northeasterly trek before heading into open Atlantic waters on Sunday.
Stewart says the storm is still an extremely dangerous Category 4 hurricane and one of the strongest November hurricanes in the region since 1999. The hurricane center says maximum sustained winds were near 145 mph earlier in the day. But Stewart says the storm is expected to weaken in intensity now that it is moving over land.