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Strengthening Storm System Heads for Mexico, Belize


U.S. weather forecasters say a storm system in the western Caribbean is growing stronger as it approaches parts of Mexico, Belize and Honduras.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Saturday that the first tropical depression of the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season is now Tropical Storm Alex, with winds reaching 65 kilometers per hour.

The center says a tropical storm warning has been issued for the coast of Belize and for the east coast of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Forecasters say Alex about 350 kilometers from Belize City, and could make landfall late Saturday or early Sunday.

They say Tropical Storm Alex could bring 10 to 20 centimeters of rain to parts of Mexico, Belize and Honduras, with some mountainous areas at risk for flash floods and mudslides.

Meanwhile, two hurricanes off Mexico's southwestern coast are slowing down.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Hurricanes Darby and Celia have weakened quickly as they move farther west, over the Pacific Ocean, with maximum winds dropping to less than 180 kilometers per hour.

Forecasters said both storms pose no threat to land.

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