Miami, Fl. (Florida News Network) At 1000 PM EST, the center of Tropical Storm Eta was located near latitude 28.3 North, longitude 83.4 West. Eta is moving toward the north near 12 mph, and this general motion is expected to continue overnight, followed by a turn toward the north-northeast and northeast Thursday morning.
On the forecast track, the center of Eta will move near but just offshore of the west-central coast of Florida during the next few hours, and move inland over the northern portion of the Florida peninsula on Thursday morning. Eta is expected to move northeastward into the western Atlantic late Thursday and early Friday.
Maximum sustained winds are near 65 mph (100 km/h) with higher gusts. Slow weakening is expected as Eta approaches the west coast of Florida tonight, followed by more rapid weakening after landfall occurs on Thursday.
Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 115 miles (185 km) from the center. Albert Whitted Airport near St. Petersburg
recently reported sustained winds of 40 mph (64 km/h) and a gust of 52 mph (84 km/h). A Weatherflow site in Tampa Bay recently measured sustained winds of 45 mph (72 km/h) and a gust of 59 mph (94 km/h).
The minimum central pressure reported by an Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft is 993 mb (29.33 inches).
The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water could reach the following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated areas if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide...
Anclote River to Boca Grande, FL including Tampa Bay...3-5 ft
Boca Grande, FL to Bonita Beach, FL including Charlotte Harbor...2-4 ft
Steinhatchee River to Anclote River...2-4 ft
Bonita Beach to Flamingo...1-2 ft
West and central Florida, through Thursday: 2 to 4 inches, with maximum storm total accumulations of 6 inches.
North and South Florida, through Thursday: An additional 1 to 2 inches, with isolated maximum storm total accumulations of 4 inches in North Florida and 20 to 25 inches in South Florida.
Additional flash and urban flooding will be possible in South Florida through Thursday, especially across previously inundated areas. Flash, urban, and isolated minor river flooding is expected across portions of West and North Florida through Thursday.
WIND: Tropical storm conditions are expected in the Tropical Storm Warning area along the Florida west coast through Thursday morning. Tropical storm conditions are possible in the watch area along the Florida Big Bend region on Thursday.
TORNADOES: A few tornadoes are possible overnight over parts of western and central Florida.
Data and graphic credit: National Hurricane Center