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Hurricane Ernesto to affect Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador

English.news.cn   2012-08-08 10:47:11            

MEXICO CITY, Aug. 7 (Xinhua) -- Tropical storm Ernesto is racing toward Mexico, Honduras and El Salvador, as it strengthened into a category one hurricane Tuesday with sustained winds of 130 km per hour.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Tuesday that Ernesto is forecast to arrive in southeastern Mexican states of Yucatan and Quintana Roo, and continue strengthening before it makes landfall in Yucatan Peninsula late Tuesday and Wednesday.

Mexican authorities have also warned that the storm would bring strong winds and torrential rains to the tourism resorts of Cancun and the Riviera Maya in Quintana Roo.

In Honduras, the Permanent Contingencies Commission (Copeco) said Ernesto has become a category one hurricane, but no damage has been reported yet.

Honduran authorities declared alerts for another 24 hours in the northern departments of Islas de la Bahia, Atlantida, Colon, Gracias a Dios and Cortes, and the central departments of Olancho and Yoro.

Copeco chief Lisandro Rosales said Ernesto rains were "moderate to strong," and called on residents to keep an eye on them and take precautions for flooding.

Meanwhile, El Salvador's Civil Protection Direction on Tuesday extended a hurricane warning for the entire country as Ernesto developed into a category one hurricane.

"Due to its closeness to Central America, the system will cause moderate thunderstorm activity, especially from the central region to the east of the country, and winds from the south," the agency said.

Ernesto, which began drenching Caribbean countries last Thursday, was expected to bring high winds and heavy rain to the Caribbean coasts.

Forecasters said Ernesto is the second hurricane and the fifth tropical wave in the Atlantic since the hurricane season started on June 1.

Editor: Chen Zhi
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