Tropics watch: Tropical Depression Eta expected to strengthen today, with Florida in its path

Cheryl McCloud
 
| Naples Daily News

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tropical weather: what can Florida expect from Eta?

While Eta is expected to be a tropical storm again by Friday, its track is questionable and complex, says Dr. Ryan Truchelut. It will be a wet weekend, especially for South Florida.

Eta continues to pose a risk to Florida, with South Florida and the west coast back in its cone of uncertainty, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Rainfall through Wednesday could reach 5 to 10 inches, with some locations in southern Florida seeing 15 inches through Wednesday, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Winds are forecast to affect much of the state starting Sunday morning.

The slow-moving tropical depression is expected to regain tropical storm strength today as it moves into the northwestern Caribbean Sea.

What will Eta do?: Why even the experts are having a hard time predicting storm’s path

On the current forecast track, Eta could be near or over the Florida Keys and South Florida late over the weekend and into early next week. 

Hurricane Eta forecast: Much of Florida must keep an eye on this rare November threat

What’s coming to Florida?: Much of South Florida, west coast, back in Eta’s cone

Eta is the 12th hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season and the 28th named Atlantic storm this season, tying the 2005 record for named storms, according to Philip Klotzbach, meteorologist at Colorado State University who specializes in Atlantic basin hurricane forecasts.

Eta is the strongest Atlantic hurricane this late in the calendar year since Otto in 2016, Klotzbach said.

Hurricane season continues until Nov. 30.

Here’s the latest update from the NHC as of 6 a.m., Friday, Nov. 6: 

What’s out there and where is it? 

Tropical Depression Eta is maintaining winds of 35 mph. It’s currently located about 410 miles west-southwest of Grand Cayman.

How likely is it to strengthen?

Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph, with higher gusts. Eta is forecast to become a tropical storm again later today, with further strengthening likely through early Sunday.

Compare Eta’s path with other historical storms

Winds could reach 65 mph by Sunday.

Although the details of the future track and intensity of Eta are still uncertain, there is an increasing risk of impacts from wind and rainfall in southern Florida and the Florida Keys, in portions of the Cayman Islands, Cuba and the northwestern Bahamas this weekend and early next week.

Details on Tropical Depression Eta

Slow-moving Eta continues to bring heavy rain and life-threatening flooding over portions of Central America.

  • Location:  410 miles west-southwest of Grand Cayman
  • Maximum sustained winds: 35 mph
  • Present movement: north at 7 mph

Who is likely to be impacted?

After weakening over Central America, Eta is forecast to regain tropical storm strength today before it moves across portions of Cuba and approaches Florida this weekend.

Although the details of the future track and intensity of Eta remain uncertain, there is an increasing risk of impacts from wind and rainfall in portions of the Cayman Islands, Cuba, southern Florida and the Florida Keys and the northwestern Bahamas this weekend and early next week.

Meteorologists in Miami warned early Friday that the potential impacts from Eta increased overnight. 

Eta could have far-reaching damaging winds and flooding rains outside its immediate path. 

What will Eta do?: Why even the experts are having a hard time predicting storm’s path

Florida impact: Most of Florida slips out of Eta’s cone, but long-range track forecast less clear

Eta is expected to produce the following rainfall amounts through Wednesday morning:

  • Southern Florida, including the Keys: 5 to 10 inches, isolated maximum totals of 15 inches.

Flash flooding is possible across southern Florida.

The National Hurricane Center is forecasting a 40 percent to 50 percent chance that the Keys will experience tropical-storm-force winds Sunday afternoon to evening. 

A flood watch and wind advisory are in effect for coastal Florida from the Keys to Jupiter beginning Friday night through Tuesday. Tropical storm watches could be issued late Friday depending on Eta’s forward progress. 

While it is too soon to determine the exact timing, magnitude and location of possible impacts from wind and rainfall, forecasters warned all Florida residents should monitor the progress of Eta.

Could Eta become a hurricane again?

“Should Eta strengthen beyond a Category 1 hurricane prior to reaching Cuba and/or move more slowly than projected, rain and wind could be greater than anticipated in Cuba and later Florida,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Mike Doll.

“On the other hand, should Eta fail to reach hurricane strength prior to crossing Cuba and maintain forward speed, rain and wind could be substantially less than forecast in both Cuba and Florida,” Doll added.

Watches/warnings issued

A tropical storm watch is in effect for:

  • The Cayman Islands

Tracking the tropics in real time:

These graphics, which update automatically, show you activity in the tropics in real time:

Latest images from National Hurricane Center:

USAT storm tracker:

What’s next?

We will continue to update our tropical weather coverage daily. Download your local site’s app to ensure you’re always connected to the news. And look at our special subscription offers here.

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Hurricane Eta’s journey to continue after blasting Central America

It’s been a hyperactive hurricane season, but no storms have made landfall in Florida so far. Eta could change that, Bernie Rayno explains

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