Hurricane Iota tumbled into Central America late last night, where countries are still recovering from Hurricane Eta. The storm made landfall as a Category 4 Hurricane, near the town of Haulover, Nicaragua. This is just a mere 15 miles from Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua where slightly less powerful Eta made landfall on November 3rd. However, Hurricane Iota impacts will likely be much stronger. The storm’s maximum winds were just 2 mph shy of Category 5 at 155 mph at landfall.
Zeta is set to make landfall sometime Wednesday and Louisiana is in its sights for the fifth time in the last couple months. As the Atlantic’s record-tying 27th named storm of the year, Tropical Storm Zeta is forecast to become Hurricane Zeta sometime in the next 36 hours. Just one more storm named in 2020 and there will be a new record in the Atlantic region for named storms in a season. Way past the list of alphabet names for the season, storm names have moved on to the Greek alphabet for only the second time in history.
Category 3 Hurricane Douglas is looking very likely for a weekend arrival in Hawaii. Interestingly, the storm could make landfall, at hurricane strength, over the Big Island or Oahu for the first time since 1992. Most storms weaken before actually reaching the islands. Even if it is another near miss or weakens to tropical storm force, there is a high chance that strong winds, dangerous surf, and heavy rainfall will affect portions of the state beginning late Saturday.
The 2020 hurricane season started out at a record pace, but Saharan Dust blowing off the west coast of Africa will keep conditions relatively quiet over the next couple weeks. The dust cloud reached the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday morning, blanketing an area roughly the size of the United States and stretching over 4,000 miles across the Atlantic.
Recently, NOAA released the 2020 Hurricane Season Outlook. Expect a more active and busy hurricane season this year. Below is a summary of the report NOAA released.
Tropical Storm Bertha
Just a couple weeks following Tropical Storm Arthur forming off the Atlantic coast, another storm system formed off the coast of South Carolina. Prior to formation, the storm caused flooding in Florida after dumping almost 15 inches of rain over Miami. Read more
Tropical Storm Imelda quickly organized, formed, and made landfall all today. Imelda was the ninth named storm of the 2019 Atlantic Season. As it’s set to creep slowly north, the storm could drop a dozen or more inches of rain in Houston and Galveston this week. As a result multiple areas are under TS and Flood Warnings and a Flood Watch.
Tropical Storm Dorian is moving WNW over islands of the Caribbean, bringing winds and rain for Puerto Rico Dominican next. The storm is forecast to stay a Tropical Storm force over the next several days with the long term path over the Bahamas and towards Florida by the weekend.
Mississippi River Flooding
The Mississippi River entered flood stage on February 17, 2019 and remained in flood stage in New Orleans for a record 292 days. In an average year, the river runs around three to five feet deep through New Orleans heading into Hurricane Season. This week, the river just dropped under eleven feet deep. A large hurricane, like Katrina, can add twelve feet to the river depth, which would push well beyond the levee height and cause widespread flooding. Read more