Storm

Hurricane Marie swells along Mexico’s Pacific coast; Tropical Storm Cristobal moving away from Bahamas

Powerful Hurricane Marie kicked high swells along Mexico’s northern Pacific coast on Monday, even as it weakened slightly to a Category 4 storm. The U.S. National Hurricane Center said it would likely raise waves along Southern California later in the week.  While elsewhere, Tropical Storm Cristobal is expected to move northward away from the Bahamas but is forecast to stay away from the U.S. East Coast.

The Miami-based Hurricane Center in Miami said that Marie had sustained winds of up to 145 mph (230 kph) and was located about 465 miles (7505 kilometres) southwest of the southern tip of Baja California. It said the storm was moving west-northwest at 12 mph (19 kph).

Swells provoked by the storm were affecting much of Mexico’s Pacific coast and the Hurricane Center warned of dangerous surf and rip current conditions.

Hurricane-force winds extended up to 60 miles (95 kilometres) away from the storm’s centre, with tropical storm-force winds reaching out to 310 miles (500 kilometres).

The southern Pacific coast state of Oaxaca requested federal disaster relief after about 10,000 homes were either damaged, flooded or cut off by mudslides on the state’s mountainous rural roads due to rains associated with Marie last week. One man was injured in a mudslide but there were no reported deaths, the state government said late Sunday.

The government of Baja California Sur, closer to the hurricane’s current location, said it would cancel some classes in the resort cities of Los Cabos as a precautionary measure.

Elsewhere in the Caribbean, people are feeling the effects of Tropical Storm Cristobal.

The storm’s maximum sustained winds Monday morning increased to near 60 mph (95 kph). The U.S. National Hurricane Center says gradual strengthening is expected and Cristobal could become a hurricane in the next few days.

Cristobal is centred about 115 miles (195 kilometres) east-northeast of San Salvador and is moving north near 3 mph (6 kph).