Hurricane Iota is expected to make landfall in Central America, bringing ‘catastrophic winds’ and ‘a life-threatening storm surge’

hurricane iota

  • According to the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Iota is expected to bring "potentially catastrophic winds, a life-threatening storm surge, and extreme rainfall" to parts of Central America in the coming days. 
  • The NHC projected the storm will reach parts of Nicaragua and Honduras on Monday night or Tuesday morning, bringing winds of up to 130 mph. 
  • The storm comes less than two weeks after Hurricane Eta ravaged the region, destroying towns and leaving many dead or missing. 
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Hurricane Iota is quickly gathering strength and expected to make landfall in Central America in the coming days, less than two weeks after Hurricane Eta ravaged the region. 

According to the National Hurricane Center, the storm is expected to bring "potentially catastrophic winds, a life-threatening storm surge, and extreme rainfall" to parts of Central America. NHC experts on Sunday said Hurricane Iota is forecast to be an "extremely dangerous category 4" storm, and is on track to make landfall on the coasts of Nicaragua and Honduras on Monday night or Tuesday morning, with winds reaching up to 130 mph. 

An NHC advisory issued Sunday morning warned of a storm surge that could raise water levels by up to 15 feet above normal tide levels on the coasts, which "will be accompanied by large and destructive waves." The advisory said isolated maximum rainfall could reach as high as between 20 and 30 inches in northeast Nicaragua and northern Honduras. 

"This rainfall would lead to significant, life-threatening flash flooding and river flooding, along with mudslides in areas of higher terrain," the advisory states. 

The arrival of Hurricane Iota comes on the heels of fellow category 4 storm, Hurricane Eta, which wreaked havoc on many Central American coastal communities and left several dead or missing after it made landfall on November 3. 

While Eta also ravaged parts of Florida after initially making landfall in Central America, Iota is not expected to impact the US, according to the New York Times. 

Hurricane Iota is the 30th named storm of 2020, beating the record of 28 in 2005 and outpacing earlier forecasts for 25 major storms for the year. 

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