Helene weakens, Gordon grows stronger

Aug. 18, 2012 at 1:28 PM

MIAMI, Aug. 18 (UPI) -- Tropical Storm Helene weakened to a tropical depression Saturday as it moved inland just south of Tampico, Mexico.

In its 11 a.m. EDT update, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said Helene had top sustained winds of 35 mph, and was located about 15 miles south southwest of Tampico. The storm was moving northwest at 9 mph.

The tropical storm warning from Barra de Nautla to La Cruz has been discontinued by the Mexican government.

Helene is expected to produce 3 to 6 inches of rainfall across the northeastern portions of Mexico from Veracruz into southern Tamaulipas and eastern San Luis states. Isolated rainfall of up to 8 inches is possible.

The hurricane center said the storm was projected to dissipate by Monday.

In its 11 a.m. EDT advisory, the National Hurricane Center said Gordon, now elevated to a hurricane, was about 700 miles west-southwest of the Azores, continuing to move east at 18 mph. Top sustained winds were estimated at 80 mph.

Hurricane force winds extend out up to 35 miles from the center, with tropical storm winds stretching out up to 125 miles.

Gordon is projected to begin weakening Sunday when it reaches cooler waters. When it approaches the eastern Azores Sunday night, forecasters say top sustained winds will be at or just below minimum speeds for the storm to be considered a hurricane.

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