As Tropical Storm Nate formed Thursday in the Caribbean near the coast of Nicaragua it is possible that it may impact the Gulf Coast as a hurricane by this weekend.
Right now the storm is located about 10 miles south of Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua, the National Hurricane Center said in its 8 a.m. ET advisory.
So far,Nate has sustained winds of about 40 mph, moving northwest at 8 mph, the NHC said, adding “strengthening is likely over the northwestern Caribbean Sea tonight and Friday.”
“On the forecast track, the center of Nate should move across northeastern Nicaragua and eastern Honduras today and then over the northwestern Caribbean Sea tonight and Friday,” the NHC said.
“There is quite a bit of uncertainty when it comes to timing, track and intensity, but the southeastern Louisiana coast to the Florida Panhandle should monitor the forecast and any changes over the next few days.”
According to Dean, the government of Mexico has issued a Hurricane Watch along the northern coast of the Yucatan peninsula from Punta Herrero to Rio Lagartos. Bands of heavy rain and wind may affect Cancún and Cozumel by Friday.
— NHC Atlantic Ops (@NHC_Atlantic) October 5, 2017
A Tropical Storm Warning is also in effect from Sandy Bay Sirpi, Nicaragua to Punta Castilla, Honduras.
“Interests elsewhere in Honduras, the Bay Islands, western Cuba and the Yucatan Peninsula should monitor the progress of Nate,” the NHC said.
Dean also stated that rainfall amounts of 15 to 20 inches are expected across portions of Nicaragua and Honduras, with isolated maximum amounts of 30 inches and could cause “life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.”
The storm’s proximity to, or possibly moving over land will keep it disorganized in the short term, but strengthening is more likely into Saturday as it moves northward, eventually into the Gulf of Mexico.
— Janice Dean (@JaniceDean) October 5, 2017
Right now, any possible impact from the storm on the United States is not yet clear, but the NHC’s forecast cone shows it may approach the eastern Gulf Coast near the Florida panhandle as a hurricane by Sunday.
“There is quite a bit of uncertainty when it comes to timing, track and intensity, but the southeastern Louisiana coast to the Florida Panhandle should monitor the forecast and any changes over the next few days,” Dean said.
After a month of devastation from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, Nate is the 14th named storm of the year.
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