Tropical Storm Patricia prompts watches on Mexico’s Pacific coast

MIAMI — Hurricane and tropical storm watches have been issued for parts of Mexico’s Pacific coast ahead of the expected approach of Tropical Storm Patricia.

Patricia’s maximum sustained winds early Wednesday are near 40 mph (65 kph). The U.S. National Hurricane Center says additional strengthening is forecast and Patricia is expected to become a hurricane on Thursday.

A hurricane watch is in effect for Mexico’s coast from Lazaro Cardenas to Playa Perula. A tropical storm watch is in effect from east of Lazaro Cardenas to Tecpan de Galeana.

The storm is centred about 375 miles (605 kilometres) southeast of Acapulco, Mexico, and is moving west near 7 mph (11 kph).