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Tropical Storm Eta is tracking through the Caribbean Sea where it's expected to intensify into a hurricane before striking Central America this week.
- Weather Channel photo -


Published Monday, November 2, 2020

Alert: Eta developing into a hurricane

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff


Due to the tropical storm ETA that  is expected to cross the Caribbean Sea toward Nicaragua, which could cause some consequences also in Costa Rica, authorities of the National Emergency Commission established a Yellow Alert in most of the country.

"This meteorological phenomenon is expected to evolve on the next hours to a hurricane, with an indirect influence on our country, mainly on the Pacific-slope," the commission said in its statement.

According to a report on the Weather Channel on Sunday Night, Tropical Storm Eta is tracking through the Caribbean Sea where it's expected to intensify into a hurricane before striking Central America this week.

"Eta is the 28th storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, which ties the 2005 season for the most storms on record, " said the report.

The specialist forecast, Eta is to intensify into a hurricane early this week as it approaches Central America, specifically Honduras and Nicaragua. "Hurricane and/or tropical storm conditions are expected in parts of southern Honduras and/or northern Nicaragua by late Monday  and early Tuesday."

According to the forecast, there will be a dangerous storm surge near and just north of where Eta crosses the coast. Parts of northern Nicaragua could see an inundation of 6 to 9 feet above normal tide levels.

In the country, the commission officers will tour the emergency committees of the municipalities of Osa, Golfito, Corredores, Coto Brus, Buenos Aires, Pérez Zeledón, Quepos, Parrita, Garabiro, Miramar and Puntarenas.

The specialists established a Yellow Alert for almost the entire country, such as the Pacific Coast, Northern Zone, Southern Zone and the Central Valley. The alert status serves as an announcement for the rescue forces to prepare for an increased danger of a natural phenomenon that will affect the population in a specific region.

The Green Alert was established on the Caribbean Coast (Limón Province). This alert is given when it is anticipated that a meteorological phenomenon endangers a specific area in the country. The authorities activate the community's emergency commissions to take action due to the danger related to the alert.

According to specialists, heavy rains and thunderstorms are expected to continue for at least a week.

Last week the commission had established alerts for the passage of new Tropical Wave #49 of the green season. Due to the heavy rains, commission officials reported at least 15 emergency services due to bad weather.

According to Sigifredo Pérez, head of Risk Management, most of the emergencies were attended in the Central Valley, the Central Pacific Coast, the South Pacific Coast and some sectors of Guanacaste.

Also, the intensity of the rains will increase due to the Intertropical Convergence Zone that is located throughout Costa Rica, the Meteorological Institute said in its statement.

The Intertropical Convergence Zone, known by sailors as the doldrums or the calms due to the dull windless weather is the area where the northeast and southeast trade winds converge. The zone appears as a band of clouds, usually, thunderstorms, that circle the globe near the equator.

Due to the high risk of continuous rains, specialists stress the following to avoid accidents, damage to structures and emergencies during the green season:

• Keep the roof of your house clean.

• Clear a path in the backyard allowing rainwater to move without problems toward the drainage, which helps to avoid damages and leaks in the house.

• Pick up the garbage so that it does not fall on the pipes or drains on the sidewalks.

• Avoid that solvents, oils, acids or corrosive liquids fall into the sewer pipes and deteriorate them.

• Organize the cleaning of public areas such as river banks in your community to avoid flooding.

• Report the lack of concrete caps or grids in the pipes to the Aqueduct Institute by calling 2547-6555.

Authorities call on the public to take the following precautionary measures:

• Stay informed about the alerts issued by the authorities.

• People living in mountain areas should increase precautionary measures against a possible landslide or material falling from the high areas of the hills.

• Have an emergency evacuation plan in the community, work and home.

• Drivers must increase precautions for heavy rain and fog.

• Take precautionary measures in case of electrical storms.

• Be alert in vulnerable areas to flooding due to sewer saturation or increase of river flow.

• In case of a thunderstorm, take refuge in a safe place.

• In case of strong wind gusts, be alert to possible falling tree branches or electrical cables.

• In the event of a landslide, do not walk on the debris, stay away from affected areas, and do not return home until authorities verify that it is a safe place.

Authorities ask for the people to call 911 to report any possible flooding, fallen trees or landslides in the country.

A.M. Costa Rica urges readers to share this alert with their contacts.

What emergencies have you heard of due to the thunderstorms in your community?  We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to


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