The 2020 hurricane season continues to strike relentlessly because of Eta, the 28th storm of the season,with torrential rains and strong winds. Typically Central America is the graveyard for hurricanes – but not Eta. Increasingly, forecasters fear that Eta will reappear in warm Caribbean waters and then head to Florida later this week.
Eta is weakening on land overnight and the once intense storm was a tropical depression at 4am EST, according to the US National Hurricane Center in Miami. But Eta is expected to go on Friday the Caribbean and move northeast. Models show the system is reorganizing, with some new intensification this weekend over the Caribbean and the Florida Strait, north of Cuba. On this road there appeared to be two more landings: Cuba on Sunday and possibly South Florida on Monday.
If Eta did make landfall along the US coastline, it would break the record for the most named storms hitting the United States in one season, at position 12. If it returns to storm intensity, that is. will break the record for most of the storms that land on the United States.
As of Thursday night, Eta had passed directly through central Honduras and continued to move west, deeper into Central America. The system is expected to continue to cause torrential showers and cause flash floods. The hurricane center said it “is likely to degrade to a remaining low or low pressure bottom” on Thursday morning.
So far, Eta has been blamed for at least four deaths.
Later this week, Eta will begin to feel the effects of navigating its superior north, making it difficult for the hurricane to turn right, pushing it back into the hot seas in the northern Caribbean. While some intensity may occur, it will be limited, at least initially, as Eta will face some dry air, upstairs wind shear, interacting with Cuba’s mainland. and time is limited.
On Saturday the system will overtake Cuba, potentially a tropical storm, and then head south to Florida. It is still uncertain how strong Eta will be and how powerful the storm will hit South Florida. It is more likely that Eta will be a strong tropical storm or even a low grade hurricane. Some models show a direct hit, while others show a dash through the Florida Keys.
Regardless of the track exactly, Eta will deliver a very wet weather across South Florida from Friday through early next week. Depending on the route, there may be rain per meter at some points.
After the storm passed South Florida, most later models showed it would roll back west into the Gulf of Mexico early next week. The Gulf waters were still warm enough for Eta to regain her strength once again. While it is too early to know if and where another landing is possible, some instructions suggest another landing on the Gulf Coast could occur mid next week.