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Nate threatens Mexican tourist areas of Cancun, Cozumel

Cancun, Q.R. — Weather forecasters are warning the tourist regions of Cancun and Cozumel that tropical depression 16 is officially a tropical storm.

The National Hurricane Center reported Tropical Depression 16 has developed into Tropical Storm Nate, the same storm that killed 22 in Nicaragua in recent days.

According to the country’s vice president Rosario Murillo, 11 people have been reported killed. Seven others are reported missing while thousands were forced to evacuate homes because of flooding.

Emergency officials in Costa Rica have said that at least eight people were killed due to torrential rain, two of whom were children. Another 17 people were reported missing, while more than 7,000 had to take refuge from Nate in shelters.

Meteorologist Dr. Jeff Masters says that satellite imagery Thursday showed that although the intensity of Nate’s heavy thunderstorms had waned slightly after the center made landfall, the overall structure of the storm was holding together.

He added taht Nate is unlikely to emerge from Honduras as a well-organized system, but that it will likely take the storm 12 hours to get organized.

CNN meteorologist Brandon Miller said“If Nate manages to stay together while over Central America, it will be able to take advantage of those warm waters and quickly strengthen, maybe even undergo rapid intensification.”

The National Hurricane Center says Mexico’s resort cities of Cancun and Cozumel will feel the full brunt of the storm adding that a hurricane watch and tropical storm warning are now in effect for those resort cities as well as other parts of the northeast Yucatan.

Mexico’s Conagua warns Nate’s rains for the Cancun, Cozumel regions could amount to between 50 mm and 75 mm.

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