Hurricane Iota forecast to hit storm-ravaged Central America
November 16, 2020 - A fast-strengthening Hurricane Iota is sweeping over the Caribbean and predicted to become a very dangerous Category 4 storm as it heads for the same part of Central America battered by a similarly powerful Hurricane Eta just over a week ago.
Forecasters said Iota continued to show signs of strengthening and could be a catastrophic Category 5 hurricane by the time it reaches Central America.
Evacuations were being conducted from low-lying areas in Nicaragua and Honduras near their shared border, which appeared to be Iota’s likely landfall. Winds and rain were already being felt on the Nicaraguan coast Sunday night.
Iota became a hurricane early Sunday and rapidly gained power, and was expected to pass over or near Colombia’s Providencia island during the night. It became a dangerous Category 4 hurricane Monday morning, and the U.S. National Hurricane Centre warned it would probably reach the Central America mainland late Monday.
It was already a record-breaking system, being the 30th named storm of this year’s extraordinarily busy Atlantic hurricane season. Such activity has focused attention on climate change, which scientists say is causing wetter, stronger and more destructive storms.