updated 7/14/2009 4:52:36 PM ET 2009-07-14T20:52:36

Hurricane Carlos strengthened to a Category 2 storm on Tuesday as it moved farther out into the open Pacific and had a distinct small eye.

Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami said the storm's winds had increased to near 100 mph. Some strengthening is possible in the next day.

As of 5 p.m. ET, the storm was centered about 1,500 miles southwest of the southern tip of the Baja California peninsula. The storm was moving west at nearly 8 mph, taking it farther out to sea.

Carlos was named a hurricane on Saturday but later weakened to a tropical storm and again reached hurricane strength Tuesday morning.

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