UPDATE 1-Torrential rains kill 18 in Guatemala

* Heavy rains kill 18 in Guatemala

* Severe flooding reported in southeastern Mexico
(Recasts, updates death toll)

GUATEMALA CITY, Sept 4 (BestGrowthStock) – At least 18 people were
killed in Guatemala on Saturday, including a dozen on a bus
that was buried in a landslide, as heavy rains lashed the
Central American nation and southern Mexico.

A dozen people died when the bus they were traveling on was
suddenly engulfed by mud around 8 a.m. on the Inter-American
highway 50 miles (80 km) outside of the Guatemalan capital,
emergency workers said.

Another six people were killed in separate incidents,
Guatemalan President Alvaro Colom told reporters.

Tropical weather systems in both the Pacific and the Gulf
of Mexico have triggered torrential rains throughout Guatemala
and southern Mexico.

Constant rain in the region over the last week has left
hillsides saturated with water and with more precipitation
forecast for Sunday officials in both Guatemala and Mexico are
taking precautions against landslides.

Heavy flooding in the Mexican Gulf state of Tabasco forced
thousands of people from their homes. Authorities in
neighboring Chiapas and Oaxaca states, which border Guatemala,
and the Gulf state of Veracruz also reported serious flooding.

“The bad weather in the southeast has caused the worst
rainy season on record. We are marshaling aid for the affected
area,” wrote Mexican President Felipe Calderon on his Twitter
page.

The state power monopoly opened floodgates on some
hydroelectric dams in the region, worsening the flooding in
some low-lying areas.

No deaths were blamed on the flooding in Mexico.

Mexico’s state oil company Pemex [PEMX.UL], which has
extensive oil and gas operations in Tabasco state and offshore
in the Gulf of Mexico, reported no problems with production.
(Reporting by Sarah Grainger; Additional reporting by Miguel
Angel Gutierrez in Mexico City; Writing by Robert Campbell;
Editing by Eric Beech)

UPDATE 1-Torrential rains kill 18 in Guatemala