MEXICO CITY – Hurricane Willa weakened into a tropical depression on Wednesday after landfill in western Central Mexico, hours after officials evacuated thousands of coastal residents.
On Wednesday, the storm, whose winds had reached 120 miles per hour, lost much of its power, according to the United States National Hurricane Center. The center said that the storm, with maximum sustainable winds of 35 km / h, was expected to continue moving inland and spread later in the day.
Before dawn on Wednesday, the storm had risen for about 75 miles east-northeast of Durango, Mexico. As a hurricane, it had already weakened to category 3 before landing Tuesday night in Sinaloa State, about 60 miles south of Mazatlán, a resort of nearly 500,000.
Antonio Echeverría, Governor of the Nayarit State, said that 12,000 people had been evacuated in their own country.
The Orkan Center predicts Wednesday that the highway levels in the states of Nayarit and Sinaloa would gradually decrease, but it warned that heavy rain could still cause “life-threatening floods and mudslides.”
Before the coast, the storm hit Islas Marías, a group of offshore islands holding a penal colony and a nature reserve. There were no immediate reports of death or injury.
Upside down the coast, residents were placed on wooden panels over their windows or stretched tape over the glass.
In Puerto Vallarta, in the coastal state of Jalisco to the south, high waves crashed on the city’s landmark boulevard, which closed when the storm approached. In Nayarit, hotels were converted into shelters, with food and blankets for evacuated residents.
On the beach of Hotel Playa Mazatlán, guests were asked to wait for the storm in the hotel’s theater. “The sea is bad,” said Ramón Lizárraga, a receptionist, on Tuesday evening. “The wind has not begun yet, it’s raining normally.”
Twelve people died a week in floods and landslides caused by Tropical Storm Vicente in the poor southwestern state of Oaxaca.