(Updates with most recent location in first paragraph.)
Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Tropical Storm Rina was nearing Cancun, Mexico, on a path that will take it across the northeastern portion of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula tonight, bringing heavy rain to tourist areas along the coast.
Rina, with top winds of 50 miles (85 kilometers) per hour, is 15 miles west-northwest of Cancun and moving north-northeast at 5 mph, the National Hurricane Center said in an advisory at 5 a.m. New York time. The center of Rina is expected to pass the resort island of Cozumel and Cancun tonight and tomorrow.
“Tropical storm conditions are occurring along portions of extreme northeastern Yucatan,” the Miami-based center said. “These conditions should continue through this morning.”
The hurricane center expects Rina to meet an earlier demise than it forecast in previous advisories, with the cyclone expected to weaken to a tropical depression as early as tomorrow.
The agency’s latest forecast track calls for the storm to reverse direction after passing Cancun and head south, back into the western Caribbean, where it will dissipate.
The path, which resembles an upside-down U, is away from the U.S., the Bay of Campeche and the Gulf of Mexico, where oil and natural-gas platforms and rigs are concentrated, forecasters said. The Gulf is home to 27 percent of U.S. oil production and 6.5 percent of gas output.
Rina is expected to drop 3 to 6 inches (8 to 15 centimeters) of rain across the Yucatan with some areas receiving as much as 10 inches. The storm will also drive tides 1 foot (30 cm) to 2 feet higher than normal, the center said.
Rina is the 17th storm of the 2011 Atlantic season. An average season, which runs from June 1 to Nov. 30, has 11 named storms, those with cyclonic winds of at least 39 mph.
--With assistance from Lananh Nguyen, Sherry Su and Alex Morales in London, Randall Hackley in Zurich and Lynn Doan in San Francisco. Editors: Alexander Kwiatkowski, Paul Gordon
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