MEXICO CITY – Tropical Storm Nora is dropping heavy rains along the Gulf of California after weakening from a hurricane that set off floods and landslides on Mexico's Pacific coast, caused havoc in Puerta Vallarta and left at least one dead and seven missing.
Nora weakened from a Category 1 hurricane at midday Sunday after making a brief land passage just inland from the Mazatlan resort area and then moving back over water and entering the narrow gulf. Though it was barely a tropical storm by late Sunday, forecasters warned that its heavy rains still posed a danger for areas along the gulf.
Nora had maximum sustained winds of 40 mph (65 kph) late Sunday and was moving to the north-northwest at 12 mph (19 kph). Its center was about 95 miles (155 kilometers) southeast of Los Mochis.
Communities in the coastal states of Michoacan, Colima and Jalisco experienced heavy rain and rough surf as the storm moved northward battering itself by staying close to shore.
In Jalisco state, officials said a teenager from Spain was killed Saturday night when a hotel partially collapsed in Puerto Vallarta amid severe flooding when Nora passed by the tourist city as a Category 1 hurricane. A woman was also missing there after her car was swept away. Officials said flooding damaged 500 homes and two people were injured in a landslide.
Mexico's navy said it was searching for six fishermen from the state of Guerrero who were reported missing at sea.
Two rivers overflowed in Puerto Vallarta during the storm Saturday night and flooded part of the center of the town. A torrent of water broke up a bridge and took away part of a small four-story boutique hotel where the dead boy was found Sunday after eight hours of searching. The rest of his family escaped before the collapse, authorities said.
Jalisco Gov. Enrique Alfaro said the missing woman in Puerto Vallarta was lost when surging waters dragged her from her car and swept her away
The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Nora would keep dragging along the mainland shore of the gulf and was expected to weaken into a tropical depression by Monday night. Moisture from the storm could bring heavy rains by midweek to the U.S. Southwest and central Rockies, the center said.
The center said some areas along the west coast of Mexico could see rainfall totals from 8 to 12 inches (20 to 30 centimeters) with even more in some spots.