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Mexico appears clear of storm that threatened Pacific coast

October 23, 2013|By Cecilia Sanchez and Richard Fausset
  • A resident whose home was flooded rinses away mud from his TV in Coyuca de Benitez, near Acapulco, on Wednesday. Raymond weakened from a hurricane to a tropical storm Wednesday and began moving away from Mexico's Pacific coast.
A resident whose home was flooded rinses away mud from his TV in Coyuca de… (Marco Ugarte / Associated…)

MEXICO CITY — The Pacific coast of Mexico, still smarting from the battering it took from a tropical storm last month, appears to have dodged another assault as a powerful storm moved away from the coast early Wednesday.

Conagua, the Mexican water commission, announced that the storm, formerly known as Hurricane Raymond, had been reclassified as a tropical storm. It was about 155 miles southwest of the resort city of Zihuatanejo Wednesday morning, and was moving west-southwest away from the coast at a clip of about 8 mph.

In the state of Guerrero — home to both Zihuatanejo and Acapulco — officials were particularly relieved. Last month, the state, one of Mexico’s poorest, was ravaged by Tropical Storm Manuel, which caused an estimated $1.7 billion in damage. The storm, combined with a hurricane that hit Mexico’s gulf coast at roughly the same time, resulted in more than 139 deaths nationwide.

“It’s good news for us that the hurricane is leaving now,” Guerrero Gov. Angel Aguirre said at a press conference. He added that there was no significant damage in the state, and that the 1,500 residents who had moved to government shelters would soon be returning home.

Government officials were widely blamed after the earlier storm for their inadequate response, and for allowing violations of building codes and environmental rules that may have exacerbated September’s damage.


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Twitter: @RichardFausset

Sanchez is a news assistant in The Times' Mexico City bureau.

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