Tropical Cyclone Earl remains active in the Caribbean Sea…located about 185 miles east-southeast of Belize City
Tropical Storm Earl continues to strengthen in the Caribbean Sea, taking aim on the Yucatan Peninsula/Belize…as a possible hurricane soon
Tropical Storm Earl is moving toward the west at near 14 mph.
Hurricane warnings are in force for the coast of Belize, the southern portion of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, and the islands off the north coast of Honduras.
The main concern from Earl is its heavy rains, with rainfall amounts in excess of 8.00″ expected over northern Honduras, northern Guatemala, most of Belize, and parts of Mexico, bringing life-threatening flash floods and landslides.
The storm’s 4-6 foot storm surge will cause additional flooding along the coast near and to the right of where the center hits in Belize. Strong winds will also be a major issue.
According to the National Hurricane Center (NHC), a NOAA Hurricane Hunter plane left Earl about 3 hours ago, and found that the cyclone was a little stronger. Since that time, the cloud pattern presentation on satellite has improved, suggesting that Earl could be a hurricane.
An Air Force plane just reached the cyclone, although so far no hurricane-force winds. The only factor which could inhibit additional strengthening today is the interaction of the circulation with Central America, but nonetheless Earl is expected to increase a little in intensity before landfall in Belize early Thursday.
After landfall, weakening is anticipated, and only slight strengthening is possible if the center of the cyclone moves over the Bay of Campeche. Earl has continued to move generally westward about 12 knots.
Earl should stay on a westward track over Belize and Yucatan, and the latest guidance suggests that the storm will remain over land or very near the coast over the southern Bay of Campeche. The short time over water reduces the chances of re-intensification.
There are no other tropical cyclone threat areas in the Atlantic, and none of the reliable models for tropical cyclone formation is predicting development during the coming 5-days.
There is some concern in the Eastern Pacific, which is loosely associated with Earl…which is the possible arrival of the remnants of Earl early next week. Earl will cease to exist as a named storm during its long traverse of Mexico during the coming weekend, but if Earl’s remnants manage to cross over Mexico and arrive over the waters off the coast of Acapulco, Mexico, with some spin still intact, regeneration into a tropical storm is possible.
If Earl’s circulation has become unidentifiable by the time it crosses into the Pacific…the new storm would be named Javier. This NHC image shows about where this might happen within 5-days.
SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:
A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* Puerto Costa Maya, Mexico, southward to the Belize/Guatemala border.
* Bay Islands, Honduras.
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* North coast of Honduras from Cabo Gracias a Dios westward to the Honduras/Guatemala border.
* North of Puerto Costa Maya to Punta Allen, Mexico.
HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND
WIND: Tropical storm conditions are probably already occuring along the north coast of Honduras, including the Bay Islands, making outside preparations difficult or dangerous. These conditions will reach Belize and Mexico within the hurricane and tropical storm warning area by tonight or early Thursday. Hurricane conditions are expected to begin in the Bay Islands of Honduras later today and in portions of the hurricane warning area in Belize and Mexico tonight or early Thursday.
RAINFALL: Earl is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 8 to 12 inches over portions of Belize, Honduras, Guatemala, and the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico through Thursday night. Very heavy rain will reach the Mexican states of Tabasco and Veracruz between Thursday night and Saturday morning. Isolated maximum amounts of 16 inches are possible in Belize and Mexico. These rains could result in life-threatening flash floods and mud slides.
STORM SURGE: A storm surge will raise water levels by as much as 4 to 6 feet above normal tide levels along the immediate coast of Belize and the eastern Yucatan peninsula near and to the north of where the center makes landfall. Storm surge will raise water levels by as much as 2 to 4 feet above normal tide levels in areas of onshore winds on the Bay Island of Honduras. Near the coast, the surge will be accompanied by large and damaging waves.
There are no active tropical cyclones
Tropical Cyclone Earl
Gulf of Mexico
There are no active tropical cyclones