Hurricane Orlene hits Mexico's Pacific coast before weakening
Hurricane Orlene brought strong winds and heavy rains to Mexico's northwestern Pacific coast on Monday but rapidly weakened as it moved inland, forecasters said.
Orlene came ashore as a Category One hurricane—the lowest on a scale of five—packing maximum sustained winds of 85 miles (140 kilometers) per hour, the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.
It quickly lost its hurricane strength as it churned over land and was downgraded to a tropical depression hours later, but still posed a risk of flash flooding and landslides, the NHC said.
Boats had been brought ashore in the beachside city of Mazatlan in Sinaloa state ahead of Orlene's arrival.
Businesses boarded up windows and laid down sandbags in case of flooding.
Orlene had strengthened to a powerful Category 4 hurricane on Sunday in the Pacific, prompting warnings for inhabitants of at-risk areas to take refuge in temporary shelters, but lost strength as it approached the coast.
Maximum sustained winds dropped to near 35 miles (55 kilometers) per hour, and Orlene was expected to dissipate by Monday night, according to the NHC.
Tropical cyclones hit Mexico every year on both its Pacific and Atlantic coasts, usually between May and November.
In October 1997, Hurricane Paulina hit Mexico's Pacific coast as a Category 4 storm, leaving more than 200 dead.
© 2022 AFP