Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tropical Storm Ida Has Formed

Tropical Depression Number 11, which formed earlier today in the southwstern Caribbean Sea, not far from the coastline of Nicaragua, has intensified to tropical storm strength, and is named Ida. Ida is the 9th named storm of the 2009 Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season. Within the last hour, an Air Force Rconnaissance plane found sustained winds of nearly 60 MPH, with a minimum central pressure of 996 mb.

The system is moving slowly toward the WNW, but is expected to slow more, turn NW, and make landfall on Nicaragua's east coast sometime tonight, possibly producng very dangerous flash flooding and mud-slides. Ida's 'long term' future will be determined by where she hits, and what path she takes over Nicaragua. Meanwhile, the short term future of many Nicaraguans will be determined by Ida. I'll worry about what might happen to Ida down the line after her initial encounter with land. For now, let's hope the people of Nicaragua escape any major effects from this late season storm.