Marie becomes Category 1 hurricane, to bring heavy rains to western Mexico

Mexico City, Aug 23 (EFE).- Marie was upgraded Saturday from a tropical storm to a Category 1 hurricane off Mexico's Pacific coast and its outer bands are expected to begin lashing western states with heavy rains in the coming hours, the National Water Commission, or Conagua, said.

In a bulletin issued at 7:15 a.m., Conagua said the hurricane was centered 575 kilometers (350 miles) south-southwest of Manzanillo, a port city in the western state of Colima.

It said Marie was packing maximum sustained winds of 120 kilometers (75 miles) per hour, with stronger gusts, and moving west-northwest at 20 kilometers (12 miles) per hour.

The hurricane will bring torrential rain and electrical storms and hail to the western states of Colima and Michoacan and a lesser amount of rain to the states of Nayarit, Jalisco, Guerrero and Oaxaca, Conagua said.

The bulletin also warned of strong winds and a storm surge along a stretch of Pacific coast from the southern state of Oaxaca to the western state of Jalisco.

Tropical Storm Boris made landfall in Mexico this year, affecting the coasts of the southern state of Chiapas in June. EFE