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HURRICANE SLAMS INTO ACAPULCO : MEXICO'S 2ND STORM IN A WEEK CAUSES 1 DEATH, DAMAGES RESORT.

Byline: Joseph B. Frazier Associated Press

Hurricane Boris walloped Mexico's Pacific coast with 90 mph winds on Saturday, flooding the lobbies of seafront hotels and tossing fishing boats against the sea wall in this popular resort city.

A 6-year-old boy was killed when a roof collapsed in a working-class neighborhood, the Red Cross said. A second person in Acapulco was reported missing, but no details were immediately available.

Boris - the second hurricane this week to slam Mexico's Pacific coast - hit land about 60 miles northwest of Acapulco shortly before 10 a.m., the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

The hurricane destroyed the homes of at least 100 people, downed trees and flung business signs into streets that were hubcap-deep in water.

Sheets of water blew off the ocean across the city's seafront Costera Boulevard. Hotel employees with long-handled squeegees worked frantically to push seawater out of the open-air lobbies of luxury hotels.

No injuries were reported to tourists, who battened down in hotels, restaurants and bars, waiting until sunshine returned and they could return to the beaches.

``It just rained like crazy, and our electricity was out in the morning,'' said Persha Carlston of Rochester, N.Y., in Acapulco to celebrate her 49th birthday. ``But it didn't stop our fun.''

Hurricane-force winds extended 25 miles from the storm's center and tropical-storm-force winds for 115 miles. Five to 10 inches of rain were predicted, posing the risk of flash floods and mudslides.

The speed of the hurricane's winds had doubled since Friday afternoon, but the storm weakened slightly Saturday as it drifted northwest along the coast at 12 mph.

A hurricane warning was in effect from Punta Maldonado to Manzanillo. A tropical storm warning was in effect from Puerto Escondido to just east of Punta Maldonado.

Earlier this week, Hurricane Alma, with 100 mph winds, hit near the port of Ciudad Lazaro Cardenas, about 170 miles northwest of here.

It destroyed scores of flimsy houses and killed at least three people before heading back out to sea and weakening.

While causing havoc along the Pacific, the storms were welcomed in rain-starved northern Mexico, where a four-year drought has decimated cattle and grazing land and been blamed for the malnutrition deaths of scores of children.

``The negative panorama that the area faced a week ago has changed radically, especially for the season's agriculture, for which there is now enough humidity to save the (growth) cycle,'' Chihuahua state agricultural official Octavio Legarreta Guerrero said.

Speaking to the government's Notimex news agency, he said the area needs three or four years of good rains to recover from the drought.

Heavy rain had driven a few dozen people from their homes in the northern state and into emergency shelters Saturday.
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jun 30, 1996
Words:456
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