Storm Iota batters Central America, heavy rainfall leads to flooding

Andrew Cummings
November 19, 2020

Under Decree 1472, authorities are seeking to speed up renovation and reconstruction in the most battered areas of that department, while they are contemplating that, without prior clearance, they can introduce the much-needed imported elements and goods.

"The hurricane came, it destroyed my house, my daughter's house". With 30 named storms, we are now the busiest Atlantic hurricane season on record with perhaps a few more areas to watch over the next few weeks. On the forecast track, the center of Iota will move across El Salvador before the system dissipates later today.

"There are villages that can protect or save themselves, but others cannot cope with this catastrophe after Eta", said Teonela Wood, mayor of Honduras' Brus Laguna municipality, which she said was home to more than 17,000 people.

Iota arrived Monday evening with winds of 155 miles per hour (250 kph), hitting almost the same location as Hurricane Eta two weeks earlier.

"We're flooded everywhere, the rain lasted nearly all night and now it stops for an hour then comes back for two to three hours", said Marcelo Herrera, mayor of Wampusirpi, a municipality in the interior of northeast Honduras crossed by rivers and streams. She is the author of several books. In addition, it calls to consider shelters, health coverage, drinking water, house reconstruction, economic recovery, emergency works, public services and early alerts.

Panama's government said a person had died in its western Ngabe-Bugle region due to conditions caused by the storm.

A rambutan importer was on Monday anticipating an unprecedented situation for growers in Central America, which was preparing for the imminent arrival of Hurricane Iota even as it recovered from another storm that struck just days before. Reportedly, approximately ten thousand people lost their homes during Hurricane Eta.

Before hitting Nicaragua, Iota blew over the tiny Colombian island of Providencia, where Colombian President Ivan Duque said one person was killed and 98% of the island's infrastructure was "affected". The Nicaraguan port of Puerto Cabezas, still partly flooded and strewn with debris left by Eta, again bore the brunt of the hit.

The 2020 hurricane season does not officially end until November 30, and the NHC is already in the midst of monitoring at least one system, which has been dubbed Tropical Storm Polo.

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