A Look Back At The Unprecedented 2020 Hurricane Season – CBS Miami
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – 2020 hurricane season has been named the most active year for hurricanes ever.
The forecast provided for an extremely active hurricane season, which began with the first storm mentioned before the official start of the season. By mid-season it looked like those predictions were correct, and in the end it turned out to be one for the record books.
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For the second time in history the standard 21 storm names would not be enough, and for the first time in history we had thirty named storms that ended the season with Hurricane Iota Category 5.
Storm tracks covered most of the Atlantic and Caribbean, with large numbers of storms landing along the Gulf Coast.
The first major hurricane of the season was Laura, which turned into a Category 3 storm on August 26th. It would continue to strengthen before landing on the Louisiana coast on August 27th. It was one of eight named storms that hit the Gulf Coast from Tropical Storm Beta causing flooding in Texas to the Florida Panhandle, where Hurricane Sally caused that damage around Pensacola.
Although the hurricane delta wasn’t that strong, it landed in almost the same place as Laura, delaying or even reversing the recovery. According to Laura, makeshift windows and plywood were blown out.
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This hasn’t been the only place to contend with multiple storms this season. Hurricane Eta landed in Nicaragua on November 3rd. It caused catastrophic damage and floods there and in Honduras. It was less than two weeks later when Hurricane Iota landed just 15 miles south of Eta. Iota was a Category 5 storm offshore with winds of 160 mph, but like Eta it was a Category 4 storm on landing. Catastrophic floods pushed inland and the storm spread from Nicaragua to Guatemala.
One of the few places that was relatively spared from this record hurricane season was South Florida.
Isaiah was the next hurricane to hit the coast. However, Laura was a storm that we watched closely. Conditions were favorable to bring Laura, a intensifying tropical storm near Puerto Rico, to south Florida before re-developing in the south of the island. The storm then jogged further south, which meant a big change in our forecast. There was land disruption with Hispaniola, and finally Cuba, which weakened Laura as she traveled more than 100 miles south of us. If the storm had stayed on the north lane, it could have resulted in a significant hurricane for South Florida.
The 2020 hurricane season would not have the greatest impact on South Florida until early November. After bending back over the Caribbean, Eta crossed Cuba and turned northwest on Sunday evening, November 8th, to land in the Middle Keys. Despite being a tropical storm, most of South Florida awoke to widespread flooding on Monday morning. Areas in Broward County received over three feet of rain, causing flooding for days.
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Of the 30 storms named for the record season, it was a tropical storm that had the greatest impact here in South Florida.