Mexico's tropical storm Javier begins to weaken

Mexico’s tropical storm Javier begins to weaken

CABO SAN LUCAS, Mexico — Mexican authorities evacuated people from low-lying areas around the resort city Cabo San Lucas as Tropical Storm Javier blew past the tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula and then weakened to a tropical depression on Tuesday.

Slowing its forward movement to 9 kph, Javier promised an extended battering with wind and rain through Wednesday morning as it headed northward, brushing the Pacific shore of southern Baja.

The storm was centred about 85 kms northwest of Cabo San Lucas early Tuesday with maximum sustained winds of 55 kph, down from a peak of 100 kph, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

The centre said 5 to 10 cm of rain could fall on the peninsula’s southern portion, with possible maximum amounts up to 20 cms in isolated spots.

Authorities in Cabo San Lucas set up 10 storm shelters, mostly at local schools, and moved families from homes in low-lying areas near streams and gullies. The resort was closed to navigation, and some owners of smaller fishing boats could be seen pulling them onto shore and hauling them away on trailers.

Meanwhile, towns in central and eastern Mexico continued to clean up from the remnants of Hurricane Earl, which triggered landslides that killed 45 people in Veracruz and Puebla states over the weekend.

Among the casualties of Earl were at least 32 people who died in multiple mudslides in the mountainous north of Puebla, state Interior Secretary Diodoro Carrasco said. He said rain amounts equivalent to an entire month of normal precipitation fell in one night in some areas.

In neighbouring Veracruz, 13 people lost their lives when mudslides hit the towns of Coscomatepec, Tequila and Huayacocotla, Gov. Javier Duarte said.