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Hurricane Rafael Passes Bermuda; Paul Weakens

Oct. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Atlantic hurricane Rafael passed Bermuda, while Mexico’s Baja California peninsula was lashed by high winds and heavy rains from a tropical storm in the Pacific.

Rafael is about 310 miles (500 kilometers) northeast of Bermuda, moving north-northeast at 33 miles per hour, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said in an advisory at 5 a.m. Atlantic Standard Time. Rafael was at Category 1 strength, the lowest level on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale and is forecast to weaken as it turns northeast into the Atlantic.

Paul weakened into a tropical storm with top winds at 45 miles per hour as it churned in the Pacific 120 miles west-northwest from Loreto, Mexico. It is also forecast to weaken as it moves away from Mexico and heads northwest in the Pacific sometime tomorrow, according to the center’s tracking maps.

Paul may bring 10 inches (25 centimeters) of rain as it tracks northward up the peninsula. The rains may cause flash floods and life-threatening mudslides, and the storm surge may inundate the coastline near Sinaloa for the next two days.

Tropical Storm warnings are in place from Santa Fe to El Pocito and San Evaristo to Bahia San Juan Bautista. A storm watch is in effect from north of El Pocito to Punta Eugenia. Tropical-storm force winds extend 140 miles from its center.

To contact the reporters on this story: Brian K. Sullivan in Boston at; Rupert Rowling in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at

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