Nate hits Nicaragua, sets eyes on the US

Tropical features in Central America are almost always deadly, no matter the central pressure or storm classification. Nate is no exception. A fairly disorganized feature at this point, it has brought a copious amount of rainfall to Nicaragua, and at the latest update, it was reported to have led to the deaths of 20 people, thanks to flash flooding and mudslides.

The terrain in Central America abets those particular disasters, but Nate remains a fairly unbalanced Tropical Storm, and will still need to pass by the Yucatan before he can traverse the Gulf and find the resources to strengthen, though right now, it appears Nate will avoid a direct landfall over the peninsula.

As you can see with the NCAR spaghetti plots, there is a surprisingly good consensus, tracking Nate northward towards the Mississippi Delta. Importantly, this will keep New Orleans on the weaker, western side of the storm. Additionally, the feature will be moving fairly quickly, preventing any unmanageable rainfalls along the Gulf Coast.

The NHC is forecasting for Nate to become a hurricane not long before his landfall, but that is certainly a worst case scenario, given the general model consensus.

There are a select few models that have Nate reaching hurricane status, but the majority pin him as a strong tropical storm. They can be dangerous in their own right, but this isn’t going to be a repeat of the three major hurricanes that moved through the US and Caribbean earlier this hurricane season.