Tropical Storm Fernand forms off Mexico’s coast

VERACRUZ, Mexico (AP) — Heavy rains and strong winds from a newly former tropical storm off Mexico’s Gulf coast are causing power failures and street flooding in the colonial city of Veracruz.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Tropical Storm Fernand (fair-nahn) is about 25 miles east of the Mexican state of Veracruz and is expected to move ashore early Monday. The storm is packing winds of at least 45 mph.

A tropical storm warning is in effect on Mexico’s coast from Veracruz north to Tampico.

Officials in Veracruz are advising the area’s 7.7 million residents to stay home.

Blackouts hit parts of Veracruz city on Sunday as skies turned gray and rain flooded major roads, causing cars to stall in the middle of the streets. Several trees were reported to have fallen.

Forecasters say the storm could bring 4 to 8 inches of rain over parts of several Mexican states as it moves inland.

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