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Double tropical storms dump heavy rains in Mexico
by Staff Writers
Mexico City (AFP) July 01, 2014

First tropical storm of Atlantic season forms off Florida
Miami (AFP) July 01, 2014 - The first named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season formed Tuesday off the coast of Florida, bringing heavy rains and strong winds to the southeastern US state and the Bahamas, forecasters said.

At 1500 GMT, Tropical Storm Arthur was located some 95 miles (155 kilometers) southeast of Cape Canaveral, the Miami-based National Hurricane Center.

It was packing sustained winds of 40 miles an hour and was moving slowly to the northwest, closer to the coast, at two miles per hour.

A tropical storm watch -- indicating storm conditions were likely within the next 24 to 36 hours -- was in effect for the state's central-eastern coastline from Fort Pierce to Flagler Beach.

"The center of the tropical cyclone is expected to remain just offshore and move east of the east-central coast of Florida" by Wednesday, the bulletin said, adding that Arthur was expected to strengthen.

Rain accumulations of one to three inches (2.5 to 7.6 centimeters) were predicted mainly in eastern Florida, while the northwestern Bahamas were due to get up to four inches of rain, the NHC said.

The Atlantic hurricane season started on June 1 and runs through November 30. The season is expected to be quieter than usual, the NHC has said, with between eight and 13 tropical storms, of which three to six could rise to hurricane strength.

Tropical Storm Elida swirled off Mexico's Pacific coast Tuesday while Douglas pulled away -- but the double hit was dumping heavy rains in much of Mexico, the national weather service reported.

"Tropical Storm Elida remained stationary 135 kilometers (85 miles) southwest of Punta San Telmo, Michoacan," the weather service said in its report at 7:00 am (1200 GMT).

Elida, which registers maximum sustained winds of 85 kilometers (53 miles) per hour, was bringing heavy rain to seven states along the Pacific coast, including Michoacan, Jalisco and Colima.

Authorities in those states have raised an alert for high winds and strong waves of up to four meters (13 feet).

The slightly weaker Douglas, which is slowly moving away from Mexico, was Tuesday morning 720 kilometers southwest of the resort town of Cabo San Lucas, on Baja California Sur, with sustained winds of 75 kilometers per hour.

The tropical storm has brought downpours and waves up to three meters in Baja California Sur.

Authorities have also warned of the risk of landslides and flooding, cautioning the population to remain alert.

In late May, Amanda, the first hurricane of the 2014 season -- which runs until the end of November -- killed three people in Michoacan and Guerrero states.

Last year, Mexico was hit simultaneously by hurricanes Ingrid in the Gulf of Mexico and Manuel on the Pacific coast, killing 157 people.


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