Hurricane Eta has dropped down to a Category 2 storm, with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph, but it’s bringing catastrophic wind damage as Eta’s eyewall moves inland from the northeastern coast of Nicaragua.
Eta is forecast to curve back into the Caribbean, with most models showing it passing over or through Cuba and approaching southern Florida this weekend as a tropical storm. While it is too soon to determine the exact timing, magnitude, and location of possible impacts from wind and rainfall, interests in Cuba, southern Florida and the Florida Keys should monitor the progress of Eta through the week.
Eta is the 12th hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season and the 28th named Atlantic storm this season, tying the 2005 record for named storms, according to Philip Klotzbach, meteorologist at Colorado State University who specializes in Atlantic basin hurricane forecasts.
Eta is the strongest Atlantic hurricane this late in the calendar year since Otto in 2016, Klotzbach said.
Hurricane season continues until Nov. 30.
Here’s the latest update from the NHC as of 10 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3:
What’s out there and where is it?
Hurricane Eta is about 45 miles southwest of Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua, and moving slowly to the west at 6 mph.
How likely is it to strengthen?
After a rapid surge up to a Category 4 storm, with winds at one point hitting 150 mph, Hurricane Eta is now down to 105 and is expected to continue weakening as the center continues inland.
The latest forecast has it strengthening once it gets back over the water, and coming to southern Florida this weekend as a tropical storm.
Details on Hurricane Eta
Slow-moving Eta is bring life-threatening storm surge, catastrophic winds, flash floods and landslides across portions of Central America.
- Location: about 45 miles southwest of Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua
- Maximum sustained winds: 105 mph
- Present movement: west at 6 mph
Who is likely to be impacted?
After weakening over Central America, Eta is forecast to regain tropical storm strength as it moves across portions of Cuba and approaches southern Florida this weekend. While it is too soon to determine the exact timing, magnitude, and location of possible impacts from wind and rainfall, interests in Cuba, southern Florida and the Florida Keys should monitor the progress of Eta through the week.
Forecasters advise all residents to stay informed and be prepared during this very active hurricane season.
In Central America, the expected impact of Eta include:
Wind: Catastrophic wind damage is expected where Eta’s eyewall moves onshore within the hurricane warning area. Tropical storm conditions are expected in the tropical storm warning area, and hurricane conditions are possible in the hurricane watch area. Tropical storm conditions are possible in the Tropical Storm Watch area later today.
Rainfall: Much of Nicaragua and Honduras could see 15 to 25 inches of rain, with isolated amounts of 35 inches. This rainfall will lead to catastrophic, life-threatening flash flooding and river flooding, along with landslides in areas of higher terrain of Central America. Flash flooding and river flooding will be possible across Jamaica, southeast Mexico, El Salvador, southern Haiti, and the Cayman Islands.
Storm surge: A dangerous storm surge will raise water levels by as much as 14 to 21 feet above normal tide levels in areas of onshore winds along the coast of Nicaragua within the hurricane warning area, and 3 to 5 feet above normal tide levels along the coast of Honduras within the tropical storm warning area. Near the coast, the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves.
Surf: Swells generated by Eta are expected to affect portions of the coast of Central America and the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico during the next few days. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.
Tracking the tropics in real time:
These graphics, which update automatically, show you activity in the tropics in real time:
Latest images from National Hurricane Center:
USAT storm tracker:
A hurricane warning is in effect for:
- The coast of Nicaragua from the Honduras/Nicaragua border to Sandy Bay Sirpi
A tropical storm warning is in effect for:
- The northeastern coast of Honduras from Punta Patuca to the Honduras/Nicaragua border
- The coast of Nicaragua from south of Sandy Bay Sirpi to Laguna de Perlas.
We will continue to update our tropical weather coverage daily. Download your local site’s app to ensure you’re always connected to the news. And look at our special subscription offers here.