Andres first hurricane of 2009 pounds Mexico

June 24th, 2009 - 4:26 am ICT by John Le Fevre  

The first hurricane warning of the 2009 season was issued earlier today when Tropical Storm Andres developed into a full-scale category one hurricane with winds of around 70 mph (113 kph) and began pounding Mexico’s Pacific coast.

Residents and business from Punta San Telmo up to Cabo Corrientes along the southwestern coast of Mexico were instructed to take steps to protect their property as Andres brushed the Mexico coast.

At 11pm (1800 GMT) the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami said Andres was about 55 miles (85 km) south-southwest of the port and beach resort of Manzanillo and moving northeast at 12 mph (19 kph), having picked up speed as it moved closer to shore.

Heavy rain flooded parts of the beach resort of Acapulco on Monday and a man in his mid-thirties was swept away by a wave as he stood waist-deep in the sea in a nearby town fishing with a line.

In Acapulco schools were suspended and authorities evacuated more than 150 families, also shutting the port of Lazaro Cardena.

The NHC warned there could be more coastal flooding and dangerous waves before Andres moves back out to sea.

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