Narda likely to become tropical storm again off Mexico

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Tropical depression Narda is expected to regain tropical storm strength Monday after passing over the Mexican resort of Puerto Vallarta with heavy rain at the end of a day in which it caused some flooding in Zihuatanejo and other spots farther south along the shore.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said the storm was on top of Puerto Vallarta late Sunday, with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph (55 kph) after weakening from a tropical storm while moving overland. It was heading to the northwest at 21 mph (33 kph) and was predicted to begin picking up strength when it emerged over open water Monday and started hugging the coast while moving toward the Gulf of California over the next few days.

Authorities reported flooded roads and rivers, and the storm also toppled trees and billboards in Acapulco. Local media reported that a 26-year-old man died in Oaxaca state while trying to cross a river in San Pedro Mixtepec.

The Hurricane Center said Narda could continue to drop 5 to 10 inches (12.5 to 25 centimeters) of rainfall along the coast as far north as Nayarit and warned that life-threatening flash floods and mudslides were possible, especially in mountainous terrain. It said Baja California Sure state could get from 1 to 4 inches (0.5 to 1.6 centimeters) through Monday night.

Meanwhile, Hurricane Lorenzo weakened to Category 3 force in the central Atlantic Ocean after several hours as a Category 5 — which made it the strongest storm ever observed so far north and east in the Atlantic basin. The Hurricane Center said that the storm had maximum sustained winds of 110 mph (175 kph) during the night.

Lorenzo was moving north-northeast at 10 mph (17 kph) and was centered about 1,195 miles (1,920 kilometers) west-southwest of the Azores, a Portuguese island chain.

Portuguese authorities issued a hurricane watch for the central and western Azores and a tropical storm watch for the eastern Azores. Forecasters said the storm was expected to remain large and powerful as it neared the Azores over the next few days, but added that it now appeared Lorenzo would eventually stall as a tropical storm west of Ireland.

Officials said swells produced by the storm could cause dangerous surf conditions around the North Atlantic basin.