Ernesto weakens; Tropical waves eyed in Atlantic

Orlando to see high temperatures in mid-90s

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ORLANDO, Fla. - Ernesto continues to bring heavy rains over portions on Mexico and Central America on Wednesday as it headed for the extreme southern bay of Campeche.

Ernesto spun inland over Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula early Wednesday while hundreds of fishermen who fled low-lying villages for shelters and tourists evacuated from resorts to inland hotels hunkered down for a stormy night.

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Ernesto hit the peninsula as a hurricane with sustained winds of 85 mph (140 kph) when it swept over the shore town of Mahuahal shortly before midnight Tuesday and moved into a sparsely populated coastal region, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

Ernesto had weakened to a tropical storm by early Wednesday with winds near 45 mph but was expected to regain hurricane strength when its centered emerged over the Bay of Campeche.

The storm was moving west at 13 mph as of 2 p.m. Wednesday.

There were no early reports of damage, but it might be morning before officials could assess whether Ernesto's rain and wind caused problems.

Meanwhile, a wave that was once Tropical Storm Florence continues to dissipate.

"Florence is dying out, and it's likely that it will completely fall apart," said Local 6 meteorologist Troy Bridges.  "A new tropical wave behind that system in the Atlantic is also expected to weaken as it moves north."

The next named storm of 2012 will be called Gordon.

High temperatures will reach the mid-90s in Orlando on Wednesday.  Lows will be in the mid-70s for the rest of the week.

Watch Local 6 for more weather information.

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