Hurricane Hilary Threatens Mexico, Miami

Sep 23, 2011, 08:53 by R.E. Christian

Two tropical storms churned in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans Wednesday with a watch in effect for Western Mexico, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said.

Tropical Storm Ophelia, with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph, was about 1,165 miles east of the Leeward Islands and moving west over the tropical Atlantic at 16 mph, the center said in its 5 p.m. EDT advisory.

No coastal watches or warnings were in effect for Ophelia, which was expected to remain on a westward path for the next 48 hours with some increase in forward speed, then gradually turn toward the west-northwest Friday, the center said. The storm was not expected to strengthen significantly in that time.

A tropical depression south of Mexico, about 245 miles south-southeast of Puerto Escondido, has strengthened and is now Tropical Storm Hilary, the center said. In its 8 p.m. EDT update, the hurricane center said Hilary was gradually intensifying and could gain hurricane force Thursday.

The storm, with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph, was heading northwest at about 6 mph. Tropical-storm-force winds extended outward up to 50 miles from the center of the storm.

The government of Mexico issued a tropical storm watch for the Pacific coast from Lagunas de Chacahua to Lazaro Cardenas.

The storm could bring 3-5 inches of rain to parts of Chiapas, Oaxaca and Guerrero states with isolated amounts of up to 10 inches possible, the center said.

Source: UPI