The Honduran government announced on the evening of Thursday, November 5, that a 'red alert' has been issued due to the Tropical Depression Eta. Heavy rainfall and possible flooding, landslides, and power outages are expected through Monday, November 9.
On Wednesday, November 4, local authorities announced that Toncontin International Airport (TGU) in the capital Tegucigalpa and Goloson International Airport (LCE) in La Ceiba have closed due to the possible impact of Eta. Authorities have advised travelers to contact their airlines and reconfirm flight itineraries. It was not immediately clear how long the closures would be in place. The Honduran government declared a national red alert due to persistent heavy rains caused by Tropical Depression Eta on Wednesday.
As of 15:00 (local time), Eta was located approximately 95km (60 miles) west of La Ceiba, Honduras. It is sustaining maximum winds of 55 kph (35 mph) and moving northwest at 13kph (8mph). Eta has been predicted to move over the northwest Caribbean during the next 6-12 hours, where it is forecast to regain strength into a tropical storm as it moves towards Cuba and South Florida. Eta will likely lead to catastrophic winds, life-threatening flash flooding and storm surge, river flooding, landslides, and difficult travel conditions in portions of Central America, particularly in Nicaragua and Honduras, as well as Guatemala and Belize. Flash and river flooding are also possible across Jamaica, southeast Mexico, El Salvador, southern Haiti, and the Cayman Islands.
Associated disruptions to transport, business, and utilities are possible over the coming days as the storm system passes.
Honduras is vulnerable to powerful storms and hurricanes from June to November. These storm systems have the potential to unleash heavy downpours and strong winds as well as storm surges that can wreak havoc in coastal areas. Travel and service delivery are also known to be affected. In addition, storm systems can cause rain-triggered floods and landslides, which pose considerable hazards to both human communities and infrastructure.
Those in affected areas are advised to monitor local weather reports, anticipate transportation disruptions, avoid areas directly affected by flooding, confirm road conditions before setting out, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities, including evacuation orders. Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters.
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