Hurricanes Iota and Eta devastated Central America. Here’s how to help

Cornelia Mascio
Novembre 19, 2020

Iota was drenching already saturated towns and villages as it moved inland over southern Honduras and as authorities reported many people missing with some of the worst-hit areas still cut off.

"The hurricane came, it destroyed my house, my daughter's house".

The final advisory on the storm from the US' National Hurricane Center (NHC) indicated that Iota dissipated once the system made its way to El Salvador but warned that "heavy rain threat" is still a concern, as the region is forecast to see between 2 and 12 inches of additional rain through Thursday.

Iota flooded stretches of neighboring Honduras that were still underwater from Hurricane Eta.

A dog sleeps over the debris of a house destroyed by the passing of Hurricane Iota, in Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua November 17, 2020.

The storm made landfall in Nicaragua at 10:40 p.m. Monday as a Category 4 hurricane with 155 miles per hour winds, making it not only the strongest tropical cyclone of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, but the strongest November hurricane to hit the Central American country on record, according to a tweet for Philip Klotzbach, a meteorologist at Colorado State University.

Along Honduras' remote eastern coast, people fled their homes as waters rose. "We are in danger if it keeps raining".

Numerous people of Miskito are descendants of indigenous groups along with Africans who escaped from slavery and those castaways believed to have survived a 17th-century slave shipwreck. She is the author of several books.

"We could die", said Inocencia Smith at one of the shelters.

Unleashing torrential floods even as it weakened, Storm Iota churned through Central America on Tuesday, causing swollen rivers to burst their banks, flipping roofs onto streets and killing at least nine people across the region. In Nicaragua, which took the brunt of Iota, almost 90,000 families remained without electricity early on Wednesday, and 63,000 people have remained in state shelters after being urged to evacuate from their homes ahead of Iota's landfall.

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".

Iota was the 30th named storm of this year's busy Atlantic hurricane season, which ends November 30.

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