TODAY NICARAGUA – Hurricane Iota, a category 5 hurricane, made landfall Monday night, November 16, on the North Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua with sustained winds of 260 kilometers per hour, according to the Nicaraguan Institute for Territorial Studies (Ineter).
Marcio Baca, Ineter’s director of Meteorology, said that “(Iota) is the most powerful hurricane that has touched Nicaragua since we have records of tropical cyclones.”
The director explained that the center of this powerful hurricane impacted the Haulover coast, an indigenous community, approximately 17 kilometers from Bilwi.
The director of Meteorology of the Ineter said that it is probable that as Iota moves inland, it will lose strength.
Qualified as a “catastrophic hurricane”
Iota, described as a “catastrophic hurricane” will cause “catastrophic winds, potentially deadly storm surge and extreme rain impact on Central America,” the National Hurricane Center warned.
This is the second hurricane to hit Nicaragua’s North Caribbean in less than two weeks. The first was Eta, which made landfall on November 3.
Designated vice president, Rosario Murillo, assured this Monday afternoon that 40,000 people were evacuated before the arrival of Iota.
According to forecasts, Iota will move through the Mining Triangl after making landfall in Haulover and will advance towards San José de Bocay and Wiwilí in Jinotega.
By Tuesday afternoon it will reach Jalapa and Santa María de Nueva Segovia as a tropical depression.
Alerts continue in Central America
13 days after Eta, a category 4, made landfall in Nicaragua, the government had decreed alerts for the entire Nicaraguan territory. These were maintained before the announcement of Hurricane Iota. The red alert is for the northeast and northwest, yellow in the north, and green for the rest of the country.
The government of El Salvador decreed this Monday a red alert and began evacuations in some highly dangerous territories.
“A red alert has been declared throughout the national territory, given the impact that Hurricane Iota will generate in our country,” said the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources.