Eta is the 28th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season.
Tropical Storm Eta formed overnight and currently has winds of 40 mph.
Hurricane Watches have been issued for parts of Honduras and Nicaragua as the storm is expected to strengthen into a Category 1 Hurricane as the storm approaches Central America later this week.
The current forecast track has Eta reaching Nicaragua and Southern Honduras by Tuesday evening and Eta could bring up to 30 inches of rain to parts of Nicaragua and southern Honduras which could result in mudslides, landslides and life-threatening flash flooding.
Unfortunately, there is quite some spread with both path and intensity of Eta in the second half of the week.
Eric Blake, Senior Hurricane Scientist at the National Hurricane Center is talking about an extreme rain event potential in Nicaragua and Honduras from Eta.
He references that it has potential to be the worst rainfall threat there since Hurricane Mitch — which was a complete catastrophic disaster in Honduras and Nicaragua in 1998. The storm is widely considered to have resulted in 11,000 fatalities.
It is important to note that we are not forecasting Eta to be as strong as Hurricane Mitch but this does highlight just how serious 30 inches of rain could be in this part of the world due to terrain and economic factors.
The spaghetti model plot shows the path’s uncertainty and a number of these different model runs are showing some type of northward turn later this week.
The American GFS model, which has been doing quite well with Tropical cyclones this year, also is showing a northward turn later this week.
It remains too early to say whether Eta could become an issue to the United States but the risk of a tropical system tracking towards the U.S. later this week and into early next week continues to gradually increase.
Meanwhile, an Alberta clipper is moving just north of the Great Lakes this morning.
Behind it, cold air is rushing into the upper Midwest with wind chills in the teens from Fargo to Green Bay.
Wind gusts of up to 50 mph will be possible across parts of the upper Midwest today with this system.
This could down trees and power lines in some spots in addition to making it feel quite cold.
By Sunday night, the clipper will be bringing impacts to parts of the Northeast with some rain for the I-95 corridor and a sharp drop in temperatures behind it.
Wind chills into parts of the Appalachians and eastern Ohio will be dropping into the 20s and possibly some teens by dinner time tonight.
Additionally, this cold air moving over the relatively warm Great Lakes will bring some lake effect snow to the interior northeast.
Snowfall accumulations over 3 inches will be possible in some of the lake effect snow prone spots and snow squalls may reach parts of interior New York and Pennsylvania which could quickly reduce visibility on roadways.
Monday will be a very cold day for parts of the Northeast with wind chills in the 20s and teens for a large part of the region.
The good news is there is a pattern change coming and milder weather will arrive later in the week.
There is some more good news in the forecast, however. With just a few more days until Election day, there really are no widespread weather concerns throughout the entire U.S.
On Election day itself, it is likely we will see sunshine nearly coast to coast, with mild temperatures from the Southwest to the upper Midwest.
So for those that are keeping track of how rough 2020 has been, the weather is certainly giving the United States a break on Election Day.
It is worth reemphasizing though that a tropical system may make a turn northward near Central America and could quickly become a weather headline for the United States in the days after the election.