Hurricane Erick is Producing Heavy Rains Over Southwestern Mexico.

Erick strengthen to a hurricane off of southern Mexico this Saturday

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Southwestern Mexico. Hurricane Erick formed this Saturday on Mexico´s Pacific coast. The Hurricane is bringing tropical storm- force winds to the Southern Baja Peninsula.

Hurricane Erick is producing heavy rains over portions of the Southwestern Mexico. A Hurricane watch is in effect for Punta San Telmo to Cabo Corrientes, which means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area.

Hurricane Erick is expected to produce heavy rain accumulations of 3 to 5 inches over Southern Guerrero, Southern Michoacan, Colima and Southern Jalisco. The rains could cause life threatening flash floods and mud slides.

Swells generated by Erick are affecting the coast of Southwest Mexico, they are likely to cause life threatening surf and rip current conditions.

Also, a tropical storm watch is in effect for Baja California Sur from Santa fe to La Paz, that is that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the watch area, generally within the next 48 hours.

And, the tropical storm warnings are in effect for Zihuatanejo to Cabo Corrientes, meaning that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area.

The storm was not expected to get much more powerful, however, Erick strengthened to a hurricane off of southern Mexico this Saturday. The seaport of Manzanillo, Mexico´s biggest container port was closed.

Hurricane Erick is moving toward the Northwest at 15 km/hr. So far the hurricane remains offshore of the coast of Southwestern Mexico.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami declared Erick reached  Category 1 hurricane status as its maximum sustained winds grew to around 80 mph (110 kph).

Gabriel Rivas, a meteorologist from Manzanillo Port Authority, explained that the port has been closed since Friday as a precaution.

In Jalisco state, civil defense officer Leonel Hernandez confirmed that authorities in near communities were meeting to plan preparations for the hurricane.

Hurricane Erick is producing heavy rains and hurricane conditions in the watch area tonight and early Sunday. Erick is forecast to approach the southern Baja California Peninsula late Sunday. Little significant change in strength is expected tonight and Erick should weaken on Sunday.

By: Oskar Guzman.
Reported from Mexico City.
SOURCE: National Hurrican Center, REUTERS

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