Orlando, Florida. -After tropical storm Eta made landfall north of the densely populated Tampa Bay area on the west coast of Florida on Thursday morning, heavy rains poured over the west coast of Florida.
The storm was on the coast near Cedar Key, Florida, with a maximum sustained wind speed of 50 miles per hour. The Miami National Hurricane Center predicts that due to loss of power, ETA will then move northeast through Florida. ETA briefly increased the intensity of the hurricane on Wednesday morning, but forecasters said it later weakened into a tropical storm.
Eta’s takeaway has swept the Orlando area, but no immediate casualties have been reported, despite the power outages of more than 1,000 customers in central Florida.
Several school districts in central Florida canceled classes on Thursday due to expected Eta.
Several tornado warnings were issued near Tampa, but there were no reports of anyone landing.
On Thursday morning, most areas of Tampa Bay received a storm surge warning. According to the “Tampa Bay Times” report, the storm forced officials to close two of the three bridges across Tampa Bay, part of the driveway that connects the St. Petersburg area with Tampa.
Since crossing South Florida on Sunday, the storm has meandered in the Gulf of Mexico.
Eta is expected to dissipate over the western Atlantic over the weekend.
The Tampa Bay area is home to 3.5 million residents in five coastal counties. No forced evacuation was ordered, but the authorities opened shelters for those in need. Local media reported that only a few people showed up.
The forecast prompted school officials in Pasco and Pinellas counties, including St. Petersburg, to send students home. Both counties announced that schools will be closed on Thursday, while neighboring Hillsborough County plans to close schools by Friday.
The Florida Highway Patrol closed the Sunshine Bridge connecting Pinellas and Manatee Counties due to high winds. Tampa International Airport suspended operations on Wednesday afternoon and plans to reopen no later than Thursday noon.
Also in Tampa, the Busch Gardens theme park announced Wednesday that it will be closed, and some Veterans Day events in the area have also been cancelled. The coronavirus detection station at Tropicana Field was also closed on Wednesday.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued an expanded state of emergency statement to include 13 counties on or near the Gulf Coast and add them to South Florida. DeSantis also asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency (Federal Emergency Management Agency) to issue an early emergency order to release the resources needed to deal with the storm. President Donald Trump approved the request on Wednesday night.
The Hurricane Center said that a “life-threatening storm surge” could occur early on Thursday, and forecasters advised residents to heed the warnings of local officials.
The storm first hit Nicaragua with a Category 4 hurricane, killing at least 120 people in Central America and Mexico, and dozens of others are missing. Then, it moved into the Gulf of Mexico on Monday and Monday, near the junction of the Everglades and the sea.
Eta attacked the land on Sunday night because it blew up over Late Matecumbe Key, which is in the middle of the chain of small islands that make up the Florida Keys, but Miami-Dade (Miami-Dade) and the densely populated areas of Broward Counties bear the brunt.
This is the 28th named storm in the busy Atlantic hurricane season and is tied with the 2005 named storm record. Later Monday, it was followed by the 29th storm Theta, located hundreds of miles away from the Azores in the Atlantic Ocean.
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