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New storm threat to Mexico as Hurricane Earl death toll rises to 45

Published 08/08/2016

A motorcycle lies in the debris of a collapsed bridge brought down by Hurricane Earl in Guatemala, before it moved on to Mexico (AP)
A motorcycle lies in the debris of a collapsed bridge brought down by Hurricane Earl in Guatemala, before it moved on to Mexico (AP)

Tropical Storm Javier has pushed closer to the resort city of Cabo San Lucas on the tip of Mexico's Baja California peninsula, while the death toll from former Hurricane Earl rose to 45 in the country's eastern mountains.

Communities in two states are digging out from weekend mudslides during heavy rains brought by remnants of Earl, which slammed into Mexico's Gulf coast. Three more bodies were found amid the mud and floodwaters in central Puebla state bringing the toll there to 32, and 13 more died in neighbouring Veracruz state.

Javier is expected to stay slightly out to sea as it passes Cabo San Lucas and continue on a more northerly track, raking the Pacific coast of the Baja peninsula.

Javier was about 55 miles south-east of Cabo San Lucas on Monday morning local time, with winds of 50mph, according to the US National Hurricane Centre.

The centre said "heavy rains (are) beginning to spread over southern Baja California" from the storm.

Javier is moving north-west at about 10mph, on a path that could brush land around Puerto San Carlos, further up the peninsula, on Wednesday, and again around Laguna San Ignacio later in the week.

Authorities in Cabo San Lucas have prepared 10 storm shelters for families who live in low-lying areas. The resort was closed to navigation, and some owners of smaller fishing boats could be seen pulling them on to shore and hauling them away on trailers.

A tropical storm warning is in effect for the southern part of Baja California.

Among the casualties of Earl, at least 32 people died in multiple mudslides in the mountainous north of Puebla state, said state interior secretary Diodoro Carrasco. He said rainfall equivalent to an entire month of normal precipitation fell in one night in some areas.

AP

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