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Storm "Alma" affected departments in the west | Jun 5, 2008

Despite the general warning that went out in Nicaragua because of the storm Alma, its effects were confined to a specific littoral zone in the northern Pacific region. Parts of houses were destroyed, trees uprooted, roads water-logged, and thousands of people were evacuated.

Alma approached the Nicaraguan shores on May 29. Because of the possibility that the storm would be converted into a hurricane, Nicaraguan authorities announced a green alert for the entire country, and a yellow alert for the departments of Chinandega, Leon and Managua. The storm reached land in the afternoon of that same day, and decreased in intensity to a tropical depression as it worked its way up north.

While still moving over the ocean, the storm displaced with a velocity of 11 km/h, and reported winds of 100 km/h at its perimeters, as announced by INETER. Almost the entire nation experienced rainfall, though the heavy winds were confined to the three aforementioned departments.

In the cities of Managua and Leon, zones were flooded, trees uprooted and houses left without a roof. Smaller coastal towns near these cities were hit harder, however. Civil Defense reported 1,200 houses and 6,000 persons affected by the storm, mainly in the municipality of Leon. There was also report of serious damages to the electricity and water networks in the departments of Chinandega and Leon, which are currently undergoing repair.

During the night of May 29, rainfall and winds subsided considerably, and a hurricane was no longer deemed possible. According to the local press and the international news, Alma was the first seasonal storm in the Pacific of the American continent.