Dean made landfall on the East Coast of the Yucatan Peninsula near
the cruise ship port of costa maya around 0830 UTC...and the eye is
now just inland. Observations from an Air Force hurricane hunter
plane indicate that the hurricane was intensifying right up to
landfall. A peak flight-level wind of 165 kt was measured just
north of the eye. Maximum surface winds from the SFMR were 124
kt...but it is highly likely that the maximum surface wind speed
was not reported by the SFMR instrument. A GPS dropsonde in the
northern eyewall measured a wind speed of 178 kt averaged over the
lowest 150 meters of the sounding. Based on the dropsonde and the
flight-level winds...the intensity is set at 145 kt. A dropsonde
in the eye measured a central pressure of 906 mb just prior to
landfall. Some historic notes are in order here. The 906 mb
central pressure is the ninth lowest on record for an Atlantic
Basin hurricane...and the third lowest at landfall behind the 1935
Labor Day hurricane in the Florida Keys and hurricane Gilbert of
1988 in Cancun Mexico. Dean is also the first category five
hurricane to make landfall in the Atlantic Basin since Andrew of