Tropical storm Norbert weaker, but still lashing Mexico coast
Tropical storm Norbert weakened quickly over cool waters in the Pacific Ocean, forecasters said Sunday, after the storm left some 2,500 people homeless in Mexico.
The storm had surged to a category three hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale but by Sunday had lost much of its punch and was downgraded to a tropical storm, packing top sustained winds of 60 miles (95 kilometers) per hour, said the US National Hurricane Center.
Norbert was expected to mostly dissipate by Monday morning, the Miami-based center said.
Nevertheless, "very heavy winds were expected on the west coast of Baja California Sur," in northwestern Mexico, "and there was potential of heavy rains in (neighboring states) Baja California and Sonora," Mexico's national weather service said.
In the hard-hit fishing village of San Carlos, in southwest Baja California, pumps were draining flood waters after the storm destroyed levees protecting the community of 7,000 people.
Local official Venustiano Perez had said Saturday night there were "more than 2,500 people homeless" and another 1,500 whose homes were damaged in the storm.
Authorities in Baja California Sur said conditions had returned to normal in the state, but said they were maintaining surveillance in the northern part of the state and assessing a final damage tally.
On Saturday, some 2,000 people were evacuated to shelters, which were then cut off by landslides and power outages.
Last year, Mexico was simultaneously struck by a pair of hurricanes, Ingrid and Manuel, on both coasts, killing 157 people, destroying bridges and burying most of a mountain village in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero.
© 2014 AFP