‘Grace’ loses strength but causes deaths, floods, and damage in Central Mexico

State police and civil force personnel are observed, rescuing bodies, in Xalapa, Veracruz. Photo: (Civil Force of Veracruz)

MEXICO, (August 23, 2021).- At least eight deaths, in addition to severe flooding and damage in the Mexican state of Veracruz (east) caused the passage of Grace, degraded to a tropical disturbance on land, as it moves through the center of the country.

Within hours, Grace touched the Mexican shores as a Category 3 Hurricane, remained on land as a Category 1, and descended into Tropical Storm near Mexico City.

Minutes before 4:00 p.m., it lost strength from a Tropical Storm, located 105 kilometers west-northwest of Mexico City.

Already with maximum sustained winds of 35 kilometers per hour, with movement west of 20 kilometers per hour and a minimum central pressure of 1002 MB, confirmed the Meteorological Service of Veracruz.

Grace’s step

The torrential rains caused severe flooding in the city of Xalapa, the capital of Veracruz, where streets, avenues, colonias (neighborhoods), and even shopping malls were underwater.

Due to this, the authorities warned of the persistent “risk of landslides and floods”.

Two landslides in Xalapa, which buried houses at the foot of mountainous areas, caused the death of seven people, including one minor and six adults, in addition to the disappearance of three others.

Hurricane on land

Grace’s degradation occurred in less than 12 hours after it made landfall at 00:30 on Saturday through the coastal municipality of Tecolutla, as a Category 3 Hurricane and by 10:00 a.m. it was already a tropical storm, it had previously arrived to the central state of Hidalgo as a Category 1 Hurricane.

In the most recent report of the National Meteorological Service ( SMN ), at 1:00 p.m. (6:00 p.m. GMT) Grace was located 25 kilometers (km) west-northwest of the municipality of Cuautitlán Izcalli, in the State of Mexico and 55 km northwest of Mexico City.

She added that civil protection brigades, firefighters, and the water system together with the municipalities will coordinate to attend to flooding and flooding.

Floods in Xalapa

Grace also generated gusts of wind in Hidalgo and Puebla, while waves of 1 to 3 meters were recorded on the coast of Veracruz and the possible formation of waterspouts on the north coast of the state.

In Xalapa, about 106 kilometers from Tecolutla, where Grace made landfall as a Category 3 Hurricane, the effects of heavy rainfall were felt this Saturday morning, when streets and avenues turned into rivers of muddy water, trapping dozens of cars.

At least ten neighborhoods in Xalapa suffered floods, including Mártires de Chicago neighborhood, where State Police agents intervened to rescue people trapped in their homes.

The governor of Veracruz, Cuitláhuac García Jiménez, reported that 22 municipalities in the state have been affected after the passage of Grace.

Damages range from falling trees to flooding, power outages, and falling power and telephone poles.

The authorities asked the population that is located in low areas and mouths of the Cazones, Tecolutla, Nautla, Misantla, Colipa, Actopan and La Antigua rivers to remain vigilant in the event of possible floods.

According to the forecasts of the Mexican Meteorological Service, in the next few hours Grace will continue advancing through central Mexico and in the early hours of Sunday, already as a tropical depression, it will be over the state of Michoacán, in the west of the country.

Source: López Dóriga

The Yucatan Times
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