Pacific depression forms; Bret swirls off Bahamas

July 18, 2011 - 11:14 AM

MIAMI (AP) — The fourth tropical depression of the season has formed in the Pacific south of Guatemala and could become a hurricane offshore by Wednesday.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami says the depression is centered about 265 miles (425 kilometers) southwest of San Salvador, El Salvador, and moving west at 12 mph (19 kph) with top sustained winds of 35 mph (55 kph). It was expected to become a tropical storm later Monday and strengthen as it tracks northwest off Mexico.

In the Atlantic, Tropical Storm Bret was moving slowly north-northeast from the Bahamas and forecast to stay away from the U.S. East Coast.

Authorities issued a tropical storm warning Monday for Grand Bahama and the Abaco Islands.

The storm's maximum sustained winds were 50 mph (85 kph).