Latin America

Dozens Feared Dead Near Acapulco As Storms Buffet Mexico

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Dozens of people are missing a feared dead after flood waters loosened a hillside which smashed a village near Mexico's resort city of Acapulco. It's the latest damage from storms that have battered the region.


Hurricane Manuel made landfall early this morning, striking Mexico's northern Pacific mainland. It uprooted trees, downed power lines and continued a week of nonstop rain, high winds and deadly landslides. Officials say the death toll from a series of storms this week has risen to 80, and more than 50 people are still missing after a landslide consumed nearly an entire village north of Acapulco. NPR's Carrie Kahn reports.

CARRIE KAHN, BYLINE: It seems there are few states in Mexico unaffected by the storms battering the country from all sides. The effects of last weekend's double punch, Hurricane Ingrid on the Gulf side and then Tropical Storm Manuel on the Pacific Coast, are still being felt. Flooded streets, crumbled roadways and numerous landslides are impeding rescue workers from reaching the hardest-hit victims, mostly in the state of Guerrero.

Tens of thousands of tourists remain stranded in the beach resort of Acapulco. Landslides and collapsed segments have closed the two main highways out of the city. Local shelters are full, and there have been reports of looting. Rescuers reached an isolated mountaintop village north of Acapulco last night more than two days after a large landslide consumed dozens of houses, the town church and a two-story building.

ARMELIA SALDANA: (Foreign language spoken)

KAHN: Armelia Saldana told El Universal newspaper that it sounded as if the mountainside exploded. The whole thing just came down, she said. Her house was consumed; inside were her four children and mother. Hurricane Manuel is expected to dump as much as six inches of rain before weakening and heading north as a tropical depression. Carrie Kahn, NPR News, Mexico City.




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