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Tropical Storm Erika Weakens as it Moves Inland - 2003-08-16

U.S. weather forecasters say a tropical storm has weakened considerably as it moves inland from the Gulf of Mexico near the border between Mexico and the United States.

Power outages and downed trees were reported in cities on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border after Tropical Storm Erika came ashore with winds of about 110 kilometers an hour. But forecasters say the winds have slowed to about 85 kilometers an hour, and should decrease more as the storm moves farther inland.

Some areas near the border reported more than 15 centimeters of rain, and forecasters warned of possible flash floods and mudslides. But no serious damage has been reported.

Erika is the fifth tropical storm of the Atlantic Ocean hurricane season. A tropical storm becomes a hurricane if its sustained winds reach 120 kilometers an hour.