Thunderstorms not the fault of Richard, weather experts say

Heavy rains that hit much of the Central Valley in the afternoon and early evening Sunday were not the fault of Hurricane Richard, which is making its way over Belize.

Richard has moved north, but another system threatens. Graphic: U.S. National Hurricane Center

The Instituto Meteorológico Nacional said that the strong thunderstorms were products of typical seasonable weather. Pavas reported getting 71.9 millimeters Sunday, about 3.1 inches. San Jose reported 45.9, about 1.8 inches.

The weather institute said that today would be a typical day with moisture-laden breezes bringing humidity for the eventual thunderstorms in the Central Valley and the Pacific in the afternoon.

At 1 a.m. today the U.S. National Hurricane Center said that Richard was weakening near the Belize-Guatemalan border. The tropical storm turned into a category 1 hurricane with winds of 75 mph or 120 kph. The storm is expected to pass over Mexico’s Yucatan and then back into the gulf, said the center.

The afternoon and evening storms got the attention of travelers who face possible slides on a number of national highways. So far there were no reports of damage, although road closings happen quickly.

A father and child died on Ruta 32 last week, and storms caused a landslide that inundated homes along Quebrada Canoa in Salitral, Santa Ana.

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