PortandTerminal.com, November 3, 2020
On Monday, ports in Honduras, where the government carried out evacuations, were forced to shut.
MANAGUA – Reuters is reporting that Hurricane Eta, one of the most powerful storms to hit Central America in years, slammed into Nicaragua on Tuesday in an impoverished region of its Caribbean coast, battering homes and infrastructure and threatening deadly floods.
Eta came ashore south of the port of Puerto Cabezas, pulling roofs off houses, knocking down trees and power lines, and causing flooding in the region, said Guillermo Gonzalez, the head of Nicaragua’s disaster management agency SINAPRED.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Eta was an “extremely dangerous” Category 4 storm on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, bringing “catastrophic winds, flash flooding, and landlines” to Nicaragua and portions of Central America.
“We’re really afraid, there are fallen poles, there’s flooding, roofs torn off, some of the zinc on my house fell off,” said Carmen Enriquez, a resident of Puerto Cabezas.
The indigenous regions in Eta’s path in northern Nicaragua are some of the country’s poorest. Many people live in wooden homes that stand little chance against such a powerful storm.
When it struck the coast, Eta was blowing potentially devastating winds of 140 miles per hour (225 kph) the NHC said. The storm should weaken rapidly as it advances inland, it added.
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega’s government issued red alerts in several regions facing the hurricane. On Monday, ports in Honduras, where the government carried out evacuations, were forced to shut.
In neighboring Honduras, rivers burst their banks, towns and cities on the Atlantic coast flooded, and landslides hit roads.
Flash and river flooding are also possible in Jamaica, southeast Mexico, El Salvador, southern Haiti and the Cayman Islands, the Miami-based hurricane center added.
El Salvador also evacuated citizens as a precaution.
Eta is the 28th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, tying an all-time record set in 2005, the NHC said.
South Florida now in Eta’s path?
All of South Florida is now in the cone of concern for Hurricane Eta, which is making landfall on Tuesday in Nicaragua.
According to the 4 p.m. update from the National Hurricane Center, Eta is packing maximum sustained winds of 140 mph.
The NHC said Eta will rapidly weaken as the storm moves inland over Nicaragua on Tuesday night and Wednesday.
Eventually, it will curve and move back into the Caribbean Sea, where forecasters said it could restrengthen into a tropical storm on Saturday.
By Sunday at 1 p.m., Eta will be just south of Florida with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph.
With reporting by Reuters
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