Iota becomes hurricane; targets battered Central America

Iota strengthened into the thirteenth hurricane of the Atlantic season earlier today (November 15) as it moves on a course for storm-weary Central America.

Residents wade through a flooded road in the aftermath of Hurricane Eta in Planeta, Honduras, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Delmer Martinez)

The Category 1 storm is threatening areas of Central America, Nicaragua and Honduras, that were recently severely impacted by Category 4 system Hurricane Eta.

Hurricane Iota had maximum sustained winds of 140kph and was located about 390 kilometres east of Isla de Providencia, Colombia according to the US-based National Hurricane Center’s advisory.

Iota is forecast to strengthen rapidly and become a major hurricane by the time it reaches Central America.

Up to 30 inches of rain is possible for the northeast of Nicaragua into northern Honduras with Costa Rica, Panama and El Salvador also in line for heavy rain and possible flooding, the center stated.

Iota is the 30th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, besting the record set back in 2005.

The official hurricane season ends on November 30.