2 tropical storms converge on Mexico

2013-09-14 22:20
(File: AP)

(File: AP)

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Veracruz - Two tropical storms were converging on Mexico's east and west coasts Saturday, sparking authorities to evacuate coastal residents and set up shelters while watching rising rivers.

Tropical Storm Ingrid was gathering strength off Mexico's Gulf Coast, with forecasters predicting further increases in speed and a possible hurricane warning.

The National Hurricane Center said early Saturday that the storm has maximum sustained winds of 105 kph. It's about 205km northeast of Veracruz and 310km east-southeast of Tuxpan.

A hurricane watch is in effect north of Cabo Rojo to La Pesca. A tropical storm warning is in effect from Coatzacoalcos to Cabo Rojo.

Off Mexico's Pacific coast, Tropical Storm Manuel was moving with maximum sustained winds of 75 kph. It's 245km off the city of Lazaro Cardenas and 410km south-southeast of Manzanillo. A tropical storm warning is in effect from Acapulco to Manzanillo.

Manuel is expected to produce 10 to 15 inches of rain over parts of the Mexican states of Oaxaca and Guerrero, and life-threatening flash floods and mudslides are likely.

Elsewhere, Tropical Storm Humberto was swirling in the Atlantic, far from land, and is expected to become a remnant later Saturday.

In Veracruz state off the Gulf Coast, state officials were evacuating communities in eight cities near the Tecolutla river where authorities reported higher-than-normal water levels.

State officials said they had also opened 12 shelters where they've directed some 1,000 people. Many have opted to stay with relatives and others.

A bridge collapsed near the northern city of Misantla Friday, cutting off the area from the state capital. Thirteen people died when a landslide buried their homes in heavy rains spawned by Tropical Depression Fernand on Monday.

State officials imposed an orange alert, the highest possible, in parts of southern Veracruz.

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