Hurricane Iota to intensify into a major hurricane before making landfall in Central America


Iota became the 13th Hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane season.

Hurricane Iota has winds of 80 mph and is a Category 1 Hurricane this morning.

Iota is moving West at 6 mph and is about 415 miles east-southeast of the Nicaragua and Honduras Border.

Iota became the 13th Hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane season early Sunday morning — the only other season that has had more than 12 hurricanes was 2005 which had 15.

Iota is expected to continue moving west and northwestward over the next few days until it makes landfall sometime late on Monday or early Tuesday morning in Central America.

Iota is forecast to make landfall in Central America, likely in Nicaragua, as a Major Hurricane and Iota would be the second major hurricane to form this November. There have been no other Novembers on record with two major hurricanes.

Unfortunately, Iota could bring locally 30 inches or more of rain to parts of Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Southern Belize.

This is very concerning as part of this region received locally 40 inches of rain from Eta just earlier this month.

This is a catastrophic rainfall forecast and could produce life-threatening flash flooding, mudslides and landslides.

Additionally, a life-threatening storm surge could reach up to 13 feet on the coast line of Nicaragua and Honduras as well.

Meanwhile in the U.S., a powerful storm system and its associated strong cold front will move from the Midwest to the Northeast today.

The storm is likely to bring very strong winds initially with the cold front passing and then behind it later on as cold air rushes in.

The cold front already has brought some severe weather reports in Missouri and Arkansas on Saturday, including a 69 mph wind which was also reported in extreme eastern Oklahoma has well.

The gusty winds downed trees, did some localized damage to homes and structures in parts of southern Missouri and northwest Arkansas.

There are numerous wind alerts for a large part of the eastern half of the nation where gusts over 45 mph will be possible, including in several major cities — from Kansas City to Chicago to Detroit and to Buffalo — which could bring down trees and power lines.

As the cold front moves eastward it could bring a round of gusty winds and heavy rain to parts of the Northeast, especially later in the afternoon.

Behind this system, the door will be opened for cold air to move into parts of the Midwest and Northeast making it feel more and more like November.



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Tropical Storm Eta soaks South Florida after landfall at the Keys




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Tropical Storm Eta Makes Landfall in the Florida Keys After Strengthening


Tropical Storm Eta, the 28th named storm of this year’s busy hurricane season, made landfall on the central part of the Florida Keys late Sunday night, bringing strong winds and heavy rains to the region, the National Hurricane Center said.

The storm had maximum wind speeds of about 65 miles per hour as it struck Lower Matecumbe Key around 11 p.m. on Sunday, according to Doppler radar data, the center said.

The storm devastated portions of Central America, where it started on Tuesday as a Category 4 hurricane, leaving more than 50 dead in its wake before weakening to a tropical depression. It passed over the Cayman Islands and the northwestern Bahamas on Saturday and made landfall on the south-central coast of Cuba early Sunday morning.

It was about 70 miles east of Key West late Sunday night, according to an advisory from the center. The storm was moving northwest at 14 m.p.h.

The Florida Keys and South Florida were experiencing heavy rains and dangerous flooding. A life-threatening storm surge could occur in those areas as well as tornadoes, which were expected Sunday evening through Monday.

A hurricane watch was in effect for the Florida coast from Golden Beach to Bonita Beach. A hurricane warning was also issued for the Florida Keys, from Ocean Reef to the Dry Tortugas, including Florida Bay.

A tropical storm warning was in effect for South Florida, from the Brevard and Volusia County line to Englewood, including Florida Bay and Lake Okeechobee.

On Saturday, Gov. Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency for eight Florida counties, including Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach. All Covid-19 testing sites in Miami-Dade County have closed in preparation for the storm until further notice.

Dennis Feltgen, a meteorologist and spokesman at the National Hurricane Center in Miami, said the storm had expanded since striking Central America. Its zigzag path, steered by high and low pressure systems, is not uncommon for storms that form later in the season, he said.

Forecasters predicted six to 12 inches of rain, with isolated instances of 18 inches possible, in parts of South and Central Florida. Tropical-storm-force winds were expected to arrive in Florida by Sunday night.

“We had some pretty heavy rain on the grounds here in October, so the ground is already pretty saturated,” Mr. Feltgen said. “We’re looking at the potential for a lot of urban flooding around here.”

“We always say there’s no such thing as just a tropical storm,” Mr. Feltgen said. “You can get some very serious impacts from a tropical storm. This is a very big, very serious rainfall event.”

The storm made landfall in Nicaragua as a Category 4 hurricane, bringing devastation to portions of Central America with winds of up to 140 m.p.h. and heavy rainfall that reached 35 inches in some areas.

Flooding and mudslides contributed to at least 57 deaths in Guatemala, the country’s president, Alejandro Giammattei, said at a news conference on Thursday. One mudslide buried 25 houses and trapped dozens of people inside, The Associated Press reported.

Two miners were killed in mudslides in Nicaragua, The A.P. reported. In Honduras, a 12-year-old girl was killed when she became trapped in a mudslide.

The storm was downgraded to a tropical depression as it traveled over mountainous terrain, Mr. Feltgen said, but by Saturday it had strengthened again into a tropical storm.

With this storm, the unusually busy 2020 season tied a record set in 2005 for the most storms. That year, Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma battered the Gulf Coast, and so many storms grew strong enough to be named that meteorologists resorted to the Greek alphabet after exhausting the list of rotating names maintained by the World Meteorological Organization.

The agency never got to Eta that year, however, because the 28th storm was not identified until the season was over; it remained nameless. That last storm in 2005 was a subtropical storm that formed briefly in October near the Azores, a remote archipelago in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.

This season, the 28th storm followed Hurricane Zeta, which landed on Oct. 28 in Louisiana as a Category 2 hurricane, killing at least six people and causing widespread power outages in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and the Carolinas.

Azi Paybarah contributed reporting.





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Tropical Storm Eta making landfall in Cuba, heads toward southern Florida


The storm is expected to drench the Florida Keys.

Tropical Storm Eta made landfall early Sunday morning along the south central coast of Cuba with winds of 65 mph.

The storm is about 235 miles south-southeast of Miami and moving north at 14 mph.

The center of Eta will pass near the Florida Keys Sunday night and be just West of the Keys by Monday morning.

Rainfall continues to be the greatest risk with Eta, with locally over 2 feet of rain possible in parts of Cuba.

Up to 14 inches of rain will be possible in the Bahamas and parts of Florida could see 12-18 inches of rain. In some cases, this will be enough to cause life threatening flash flooding.

October in general tends to be a very wet month for southern Florida.

An additional concern will be the storm surge. Storm surges locally of up to 4 feet will be possible in parts of southern Florida in the storm surge-prone areas.

Additionally, there could possibly be tornadoes in Southern Florida as Eta moves through the region over the next 48 hours.

Once Eta makes it into the Gulf of Mexico, Eta will begin to slow down and its direction then becomes unclear.

Forecast models this morning actually have Eta stalling in the Gulf of Mexico through much of the upcoming week.

While the exact location and direction of Eta and its eventual stall remain unclear, there is potential that cold fronts moving across parts of the eastern U.S. could draw tropical moisture from Eta and create a potential for flash flooding in some spots along the East Coast later this week.

In the West, a storm system is beginning to move across part of the country, bringing snow, rain and some gusty winds.

Some of the most organized areas of snow this morning are in parts of Montana and the Rocky Mountains where locally up to 3 feet is expected through Tuesday.

This storm system and its associated dip in the jet stream is expected to bring wind gusts locally over 50 mph from parts of California all the way Wisconsin as wind gusts could be exacerbated in the higher terrains of the intermountain west.

Elsewhere, Los Angeles received 0.11 inches of rain on Saturday, ending a 172-day streak of no rain which is its 7th longest streak in history.

Las Vegas did not receive measurable rain and has smashed their record for longest dry streak already with 202 days since their last rainfall though the region might have an opportunity to pick up rainfall today.



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Typhoon Goni Makes Landfall in Philippines; ‘Catastrophic’ Winds Feared


‘Catastrophic winds’ are predicted as the storm hits.

Typhoon Goni, expected to be the strongest storm to hit the Philippines this year, made landfall early Sunday with weather officials predicting “catastrophic wind damage” as it roared through the country.

The warning came as emergency response teams backed by the Philippine police and military scrambled to prepare. Winds were expected to be particularly strong in Catanduanes Province and other areas, Pagasa, the national weather agency, said in a tweet it posted Sunday morning.

“Within the next 12 hours, catastrophic violent winds and intense to torrential rainfall associated with the region of the eyewall and inner rain bands of the typhoon will be experienced,” the agency said in a separate advisory.

The center of the eye of Goni made landfall as a super typhoon at 4:50 a.m. in Catanduanes, an island province, Pagasa said. Its path was expected to take it through Luzon, the country’s most populous island, and the country’s capital region.

‘Super’ or not, the typhoon is expected to cause large-scale destruction.

Typhoon Goni had sustained winds of 135 miles per hour at its center and gusts of 165 miles per hour as of early Sunday, prompting the Joint Typhoon Warning Center to categorize the storm as a super typhoon.

The eye of the storm — which Philippine officials are calling Typhoon Rolly under their separate naming system — was expected to pass near Metro Manila, the capital region and home to more than 24 million people.

“We are forecasting widespread destruction even if this does not turn out to become a super typhoon,” Ricardo Jalad, the chief of the government’s National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, said Saturday on state television.

Along with violent winds and torrential rain, storm surges along the coast were expected, the Philippine weather agency said.

Goni, the 18th typhoon to strike the Philippines this year, arrives just days after Typhoon Molave tore through the country, dumping heavy rain and causing significant flooding. Molave killed 22 people and forced the evacuation of tens of thousands before moving on to Vietnam, where it caused deadly landslides.

Mr. Jalad of the disaster management agency said that evacuations in areas threatened by Goni began on Friday. Nearly a million people in southern Luzon had already been evacuated as of Saturday, the agency reported.

Local officials could order forced evacuations if necessary, Mr. Jalad said.

“If they see that their constituents are facing danger, they are empowered to carry out forced evacuations with the help of the Philippine National Police and other uniformed services,” Mr. Jalad said. There had been “avoidable casualties” during Typhoon Molave, he added, because some people had ignored warnings.

The Philippines is hit by at least 20 tropical storms and typhoons every year, some of them deadly. Thousands were killed in November 2013 when Super Typhoon Haiyan tore through the central Philippines.

Aid and rescue services are getting ready.

The Philippine Red Cross stationed rescue vehicles and emergency response teams across Luzon.

“We are determined to do all we can to help these communities prepare for the oncoming storm,” said Richard Gordon, the Red Cross chairman.

He said the disasters complicated the country’s response to Covid-19, which has infected more than 370,000 people and killed 7,185. Evacuation centers can make social distancing more challenging than usual.

The Philippine military said that it, too, had deployed emergency response units in areas expected to be hit by the typhoon.





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Typhoon Goni Makes Landfall in Philippines, Packing ‘Catastrophic’ Winds


MANILA — Typhoon Goni, expected to be the strongest storm to hit the Philippines this year, made landfall on Sunday morning, with weather officials predicting “catastrophic wind damage” as it roared through the country.

The warning came as emergency response teams backed by the Philippine police and military scrambled to prepare. Winds were expected to be particularly strong in Catanduanes Province and other areas, Pagasa, the national weather agency, said in tweet it posted Sunday morning.

The center of the eye of Goni made landfall as a super typhoon at 4:50 a.m. in Catanduanes, an island province, Pagasa said.

The typhoon had sustained winds of 135 miles per hour at its center and gusts of 165 miles per hour as of early Sunday, prompting the Joint Typhoon Warning Center to categorize the storm as a super typhoon.

The eye of the storm — which Philippine officials are calling Typhoon Rolly under their separate naming system — was expected to pass near Metro Manila, the low-lying capital region and home to more than 24 million people.

The storm is expected to weaken slightly before making landfall again on Sunday morning in the southern part of Luzon, the country’s most populated island, Philippine officials said. The eye of the storm — which Philippine officials are calling Typhoon Rolly under their separate naming system — was expected to pass near Metro Manila, the low-lying capital region, which is home to more than 24 million people.

“We are forecasting widespread destruction even if this does not turn out to become a super typhoon,” Ricardo Jalad, the chief of the government’s National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, said Saturday on state television.

Goni will be the 18th typhoon to strike the Philippines this year. It is arriving just days after Typhoon Molave, which was weaker, tore across the country, dumping heavy rains and causing significant flooding. Molave killed 22 people and forced the evacuation of tens of thousands before moving on to Vietnam, where it caused deadly landslides.

Mr. Jalad said evacuations in areas threatened by Goni had been underway since Friday. He said local officials could order forced evacuations if necessary.

“If they see that their constituents are facing danger, they are empowered to carry out forced evacuations with the help of the Philippine National Police and other uniformed services,” Mr. Jalad said. He said there had been “avoidable casualties” during Typhoon Molave because some people had ignored warnings to stay indoors.

The Philippine Red Cross has placed rescue vehicles, first aid volunteers and emergency response teams in areas across Luzon that are likely to be affected by the typhoon.

“Three storms have consecutively affected the country this month alone, and now a potential super typhoon is heading our way,” said Senator Richard Gordon, the Red Cross chairman. “We are determined to do all we can to help these communities prepare for the oncoming storm,” he said.

He said the disasters had complicated the country’s response to Covid-19, which has infected more than 370,000 people in the country and killed 7,185. Evacuation centers can make social distancing more challenging than usual.

The Philippine military said it had deployed emergency response field units in areas expected to be hit by the typhoon, which could unleash heavy to intense rains over a large swath of Luzon, including Metro Manila.

The Philippines is hit by at least 20 tropical storms and typhoons every year, some of them deadly. Thousands were killed in November 2013 when Super Typhoon Haiyan tore through the central Philippines.



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Hurricane Zeta track, update: Louisiana landfall expected; Mississippi




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Zeta expected to regain strength, make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane outside New Orleans


The storm is expected strengthen over the next 24 hours leading up to landfall.

As of Tuesday night, it had restrengthened to 70 mph and was moving northwest at about 15 mph.

Zeta, the 27th named storm of the season, is expected strengthen over the next 24 hours leading up to landfall in the U.S. Wednesday evening. It’s expected to touch down as a Category 1 hurricane just south of New Orleans.

Meteorologist said the storm could bring strong winds, up to 8 feet of storm surge and up to 6 inches of rain in some areas. Isolated tornadoes are also possible, adding to the possibility of widespread damage and power outages in parts of Mississippi and Alabama.

Louisiana Gov. John Edwards declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the storm Monday night. He said he issued the order despite uncertainty surrounding the storm’s final path, and urged residents to follow the guidelines.

“While there is some uncertainty in Zeta’s track, it is likely that Louisiana will see some impacts from this storm, and the people of our state need to take it seriously. It’s easy to let your guard down late in the hurricane season, but that would be a huge mistake,” Edwards said.

He said state officials were already assisting local authorities with “critical items like pumps, generators and food and water” for first responders.

“We stand ready to expand that assistance as needed,” Edwards said in a statement. “Everyone should be monitoring the news for information and should heed any direction they get from their local leaders.”

Forecasters said Zeta will most likely speed off to toward the Northeast and weaken quickly after landfall late Wednesday.

The storm’s remnants could get swept up with another storm system as it leaves the area, potentially bringing heavy rain in areas between the Tennessee Valley into the Northeast, meteorologists said.

ABC News’ Melissa Griffin contributed to this report.



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Jon Sanders’ 11th circumnavigation of the globe almost complete, making landfall in Bundaberg


An octogenarian sailing legend has docked in Bundaberg on his 11th circumnavigation of the globe, facing headwinds of a global pandemic and wild weather along the way.

Australian yachtsman Jon Sanders sailed more than 40,000 kilometres since leaving Fremantle almost a year ago, on a voyage to raise awareness of plastic pollution.

“It’s not just amazing, this is the 11th time he’s done this,” Mr Sanders’ team manager Stephen Davis said.

Mr Sanders was towed into Bundaberg Port Marina this morning and escorted from his yacht by police and Border Force officers for a COVID-19 test at Bundaberg Hospital, before returning to his yacht.

“Jon is probably the lowest risk person in Australia, he’s just had 30 days at sea solo,” Mr Davis said.

“The reason he left Tahiti is because the virus started picking up there and it was time to head to Australia for the last lap.”

Jon Sanders with his yacht the Perie Banou II.(Supplied: Minderoo Foundation)

With a quarantine exemption from Queensland Health, he will be free to set foot on dry land properly once his test returns negative.

‘Worst conditions in decades’

Mr Davis explained the trip was going well until the pandemic hit and Sanders had to bunker down on an island in the Caribbean for three months.

As well as coronavirus, Mr Sanders had to contend with some of the worst conditions he had seen in decades.

“He hit three very big storms, and at one stage he was sailing with all the sails down and bow sails up to slow the boat down with winds of more than 120 kilometres an hour and high seas crashing over the boat,” Mr Davis said.

“The boat was taking on so much water the engine was flooded and we expect Jon is a bit battered and bruised with [we suspect] a few cracked ribs.”

West Australian solo yachtsman Jon Sanders
WA yachting legend Jon Sanders sets sail from Fremantle on his tenth circumnavigation in 2016.(ABC News: Briana Shepherd)

The storm also left the sailor without electronics.

“But that’s how he started out his sailing 60 years ago, so he went back to basics.”

Mr Sanders is expected to be in Bundaberg for the next few weeks before heading south along the coast and back to Perth.

Coronavirus ensures subdued welcome

A small crowd of locals gathered at the marina near Burnett Heads to welcome Mr Sanders, including a group of women who regularly meet for coffee on the waterfront.

A group of six women looking out to sea, hands raised over their eyes, laughing.
Lorraine Keen, in blue, and friends welcome sailor Jon Sanders to the Bundaberg Port Marina.(ABC Wide Bay: Eliza Goetze)

“I saw this morning that he was coming in and I just thought ‘how exciting for Burnett Heads and the port’,” Lorraine Keen said.

“I googled him, watched a couple of YouTubes, and I thought ‘what a fantastic person, aged 81 and doing this’. Amazing.”

Throughout the circumnavigation, Mr Sanders collected water samples for analysis by researchers at Curtin University in Perth who hope to build a picture of plastic pollution in oceans across the Southern Hemisphere.

His mission attracted sponsorship from billionaires Andrew and Nicola Forrest’s Minderoo Foundation which established the Sea the Future initiative to encourage safer disposal of plastics.



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Weather experts warn Gulf Coast residents to evacuate, prepare after Hurricane Delta makes landfall in Mexico


A fallen palm tree left by Hurricane Delta in Cancun, in Cancun, Mexico, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020. (AP Photo/Victor Ruiz Garcia)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 3:12 PM PT – Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Officials along the U.S. Gulf Coast are warning residents to prepare after Hurricane Delta touched down in Mexico on Wednesday. Although Delta has been downgraded to a Category Two storm with 100 mph winds, the National Hurricane Center has predicted it may restrengthen into a Category Four later in the evening.

Evacuations have been issued along the Gulf Coast. Experts believe the storm will make landfall in Louisiana on Friday.

State Governor John Bel Edwards encouraged residents to put the next few days to good use.

“We’ve been given a rare gift here because this forecast is telling us several days in advance that we can expect to be hit by a hurricane,” he said. “I’m encouraging everybody to use the time you have available to you between now and when it’s too dangerous to continue to prepare, evacuate, get yourself, your family in the best possible position for this storm.”

Tourists wait for transportation to return to their hotels after sleeping in a shelter, as they wave to and applaud soldiers following the passing of Hurricane Delta in Cancun, Mexico, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020. (AP Photo/Victor Ruiz Garcia)

Delta has also had a severe impact on offshore crude oil production in the gulf, reportedly shutting down 80% of operations there.

President Trump has since received an update on Hurricane Delta. On Twitter, he warned Gulf Coast residents to be prepared and listen to the directions from state and local officials.

RELATED: Hurricane Delta Rips Through Cancun, But Damage Less Than Feared





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