Tags: hurricane earl | belize

Hurricane Earl Loses Oomph After Slamming Into Belize

Image: Hurricane Earl Loses Oomph After Slamming Into Belize

(photo of Twitter post)

Thursday, 04 Aug 2016 10:03 AM

Hurricane Earl in the Caribbean slammed into the coast of Belize with winds of 80 mph, bringing heavy rain, before weakening as the storm moved farther inland, reported The Associated Press.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Earl's maximum sustained winds decreased to near 65 mph and was forecast to weaken to a tropical depression by Thursday night or Friday morning.

Earl was centered about 90 miles west of Belize City and was moving west near 15 mph.

While Earl was expected to weaken, it still threatened neighboring Guatemala and southern Mexico with torrential rains.

Mexico has discontinued all warnings associated with the storm and Belize has replaced its hurricane warning with a tropical storm warning.

Hotels along Belize's coast and the low-lying islands offshore had already pulled in awnings and beach chairs as the rains from the category-1 storm began whipping the coast Wednesday evening.

The hurricane center said heavy rains would be a danger in southern Mexico through Saturday as Earl crosses the Yucatan Peninsula and the states of Tabasco and Veracruz.

On Wednesday, Earl raked the northern coast of Honduras with heavy rain. Officials said a big wave capsized a lobster fishing boat in the Caribbean, but all but two of the 83 people on board were rescued. The navy was looking for the two missing. Authorities also rescued four families in the coastal city of Trujillo after a river flooded.

Lisandro Rosales, head of Honduras' emergency commission, said there were reports of large numbers of trees and utility poles being knocked down. Schools and universities closed across Honduras' coastal provinces, as did two commercial airports.

In Belize, the government opened storm shelters and used radio and television broadcasts to urge residents of low-lying areas to move to higher ground.

Officials also ordered the international airport in Belize City to close, and archaeological reserves and national parks were shut. The Belize Tourism Board announced that cruise ship calls had been canceled for this week.

Employees of the Caribbean Villas Hotel, in San Pedro on Belize's Ambergris Caye, pulled in beach chairs and chaise longues as rain began to fall on the popular beach resort.

"Anything that's not anchored in, we've pulled back and out of the way," said hotel manager Paul Jewitt.

© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
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Hurricane Earl in the Caribbean slammed into the coast of Belize with winds of 80 mph, bringing heavy rain, before weakening as the storm moved farther inland.
hurricane earl, belize
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2016-03-04
Thursday, 04 Aug 2016 10:03 AM
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