Nov. 6 (UPI) — Tropical Storm Eta has weakened to a tropical despair, however forecasters say it would regain power as soon as it reaches the Gulf of Mexico and strikes towards the southeastern United States.

The storm was a Class four hurricane when it arrived in Nicaragua on Wednesday, however weakened because it moved farther over land.

Eta remains to be producing heavy rain and life-threatening flooding in Honduras, Nicaragua and Belize.

In its 12 a.m. CST replace Friday, the Nationwide Hurricane Heart mentioned Eta was located about 100 miles north-northwest of La Ceiba, Honduras, and 450 miles west-southwest of Grand Cayman. It had most sustained winds of 35 mph and was shifting north at eight mph.

Eta would change into a tropical storm once more as soon as it reaches most sustained winds of 39 mph.

From Central America, the storm is anticipated to strengthen Friday, touring northeast and chart a wobbly course that can take it over Cuba.

The middle of Eta shall be located over the western Caribbean Sea via Friday, and strategy the Cayman Islands Saturday and Saturday night time, to then arrive over Cuba on Sunday.

Eta might attain hurricane drive once more on its means towards Cuba and, at this level, AccuWeather meteorologists count on it to strategy southern Florida as a tropical storm.

“It seems that Eta is not going to simply wither away over Central America this week as some a part of the diminishing storm’s circulation is more likely to survive and re-enter the western Caribbean, the place the method of reorganizing and restrengthening is sure to happen,” AccuWeather senior meteorologist Mike Doll mentioned.

Florida has largely dodged impacts thus far in a record-setting Atlantic hurricane season, which has spawned 28 named programs.

No landfalls have occurred within the state but this season, however forecasters say the area is just not out of the woods. Eta could pose a big risk to lives and property, and on the very least, an interruption in each day actions and journey late this weekend and early subsequent week.

A tropical storm watch remains to be in impact for the Cayman Islands, with tropical storm winds arriving inside 48 hours, the hurricane middle mentioned Thursday.

The water over the northwestern Caribbean is a few of the warmest of your complete Atlantic basin and lots heat sufficient to nurture a tropical system. Eta is forecast to spend about 36 hours over the nice and cozy waters of the northwestern Caribbean, which is sufficient to permit for strengthening.

Circumstances are forecast to deteriorate over western Cuba, particularly alongside the southern coast throughout Saturday afternoon and night. Rounds of heavy rain, sturdy winds and surf are anticipated. The danger of flash flooding will enhance, as will the potential for mudslides within the mountainous terrain.

In Havana, on the north facet of Cuba, northerly winds are more likely to create overwash that would result in coastal flooding in and across the metropolis.

The storm could have one other alternative to strengthen as soon as it emerges over the Florida Straits to the north of Cuba throughout the day Sunday. At the moment, forecasters count on Eta to strategy the Florida Keys and South Florida on Sunday night time.

Impacts in South Florida and the Florida Keys late this weekend to early subsequent week will depend upon the storm’s actual observe and pace after its encounter with Cuba. The magnitude of wind, rain and storm surge anticipated within the Sunshine State might change over time as particulars on Eta’s erratic path and power change into extra clear.

Offered that Eta strikes Cuba as a hurricane and maintains some power whereas crossing Cuba on Saturday night time, a possible exists for hurricane-force wind gusts of 74 mph or better in a part of the Florida Keys and the southern a part of the Florida Peninsula on Sunday.

Forecasters mentioned the almost definitely situation is for Eta to emerge into the Gulf of Mexico after placing southern Florida, however there’s the potential that the storm will linger close to Cuba and Florida as an alternative, or it might presumably even transfer north over the Bahamas.

Eta has made historical past and matched the power of the strongest storm of the tumultuous 2020 hurricane season — Hurricane Laura — when its winds peaked at 150 mph earlier this week.

Eta joined the ranks of eight different tropical programs within the Atlantic this season and underwent speedy strengthening, which is outlined by a tropical system that experiences a rise its most sustained winds by 35 mph inside 24 hours.