CARIB | Nov 1, 2020

Tropical Storm Eta forms, expected to become hurricane tomorrow

Gavin Riley

Gavin Riley / Our Today

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Tropical Storm Eta created history late Saturday, tying a 15-year record as it became the 28th named storm in any single hurricane season. (Photo:

Tropical Storm Eta has formed over the central Caribbean Sea; the churning cyclone is bringing storm-force winds and torrential rains to many sections of Central America and the Greater Antilles on Sunday (November 1).

The system, which quickly strengthened on Saturday, is expected to get stronger still as computer projections anticipate the storm making a beeline for Honduras and Nicaragua in the next couple of days.

According to meteorologists at the US-based National Hurricane Center (NHC), with the warm waters of the Caribbean feeding its development, Eta could become a hurricane as early as Monday. 

Projections by weather sleuths at the Florida-headquartered NHC of the trajectory of Tropical Storm Eta barrels towards Central America. (Photo: Twitter @NHC_Atlantic)

As at 10:00 Eastern Standard Time (EST), Tropical Storm Eta was located at latitude 14.8 North and longitude 77.2 West—or roughly 360 kilometres south of Kingston, Jamaica.

The storm is currently moving west at 24 kilometres/hour and packs maximum sustained winds near 65 kilometres/hour, with higher gusts.

A hurricane warning has been activated by the government of Nicaragua along its Caribbean coast of Nicaragua from the border with Honduras to Sandy Bay Sirpi.

For its part, the Honduran government has activated a hurricane watch and a tropical storm warning to effectively cover the northeastern coast of the Spainsh-speaking country from Punta Patuca to the border with Nicaragua.

In the meantime, the Jamaica Met Service says its severe weather alert will remain in effect until 5:00 pm Sunday.

According to the Jamaica Met Service, while Eta poses no direct threat to Jamaica, the island is likely to experience significantly increased rainfall, periods of thunderstorms and strong gusty winds.

Tropical Storm Eta, as at 10:00 EST on Sunday, November 1. (Photo: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for NHC)

The government agency warned that the greatest risk posed by Tropical Storm Eta is out at sea, and has issued a small craft warning for local fisherfolk and other seafarers to return before conditions deteriorate.

“Fishers on the cays and banks are, therefore, urged to return to the mainland immediately and other small craft operators in our coastal waters are advised to return to port. Those in port should not venture out at this time,” the state-run agency added.

The Jamaica Met Service further warned that conditions associated with Tropical Storm Eta are forecast to remain in the vicinity of the island until at least Wednesday.

The National Hurricane Center has projected that Jamaica could receive up to 15 inches of rainfall, especially over the southern section of the island; tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 95 kilometres from Eta’s center.

Eta became the 28th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season. It is the first time since 2005 that as many storms have been named.


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