Aug 22,2007 00:00
VERACRUZ, Mexico -- A strengthening Hurricane Dean was over the Bay of Campeche headed for landfall near Veracruz, Mexico, Wednesday after raking the Yucatan Peninsula.
At 11 a.m. Dean had picked up force to a Category 2 storm with sustained winds of 100 mph, forecasters at the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said.
Dean was traveling west-northwest near 18 mph about 95 miles north of Veracruz, where landfall was expected later in the day, forecasters said.
Hurricane force winds extended 70 miles outwards from the center, while tropical storm force winds reached out 200 miles, the center said.
Dean was a Category 5 storm with wind gusts of 200 mph when it hit the Yucatan Peninsula early Tuesday, the third-most-powerful Atlantic hurricane at landfall, ranking behind the Florida Keys' 1935 Labor Day hurricane and Hurricane Gilbert in 1988.
Despite its intensity, no storm-associated deaths were reported in the Yucatan, a Palm Beach (Fla.) Post correspondent reported.
However, Dean was blamed for at least 13 deaths in Dominica, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique and St. Lucia.
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