Hurricane Enrique sweeps past Mexico’s southwestern coast

The first hurricane of the eastern Pacific season stayed just off Mexico’s southwestern coast Sunday, and forecasters warned that heavy rains could cause dangerous flash floods or mudslides in coastal areas.

Hurricane Enrique, which formed Saturday, had maximum sustained winds around 90 mph (150 kph) late Sunday afternoon.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said that ’’slight strengthening″ was possible through Sunday night. ’’Enrique is then expected to begin weakening on Monday and continue to weaken through early this week,″ the center said.

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Enrique was on a path that could take it to the southern end of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula as a tropical storm by midweek.

The storm’s core was about 95 miles (155 kilometers) south of Cabo Corrientes — the bulge on the coast south of Puerto Vallarta — and moving north at 8 mph (13 kph).

The hurricane center said Enrique could drop 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30 centimeters) of rain, with isolated maximums of 18 inches (45 centimeters), over Colima state and coastal sections of the states of Jalisco, Michoacan, and northern Guerrero.

A hurricane warning was in effect from Playa Perula to Cabo Corrientes. A tropical storm warning was posted from Punta San Telmo to Punta Mita.

Mexico’s Defense Department has said troops were being deployed to aid civilians in advance of the storm.