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Tropical Storm Lisa prompts hurricane watches for parts of Honduras and the Belize coast, National Hurricane Center says

<i>CNN Weather</i><br/>Tropical Storm Lisa is expected to hit Belize on November 2 as a strong tropical storm or a Category 1 hurricane.
CNN Weather
Tropical Storm Lisa is expected to hit Belize on November 2 as a strong tropical storm or a Category 1 hurricane.

By Haley Brink and Amir Vera, CNN

Parts of Central America are bracing for approaching Tropical Storm Lisa this week as the storm is expected to bring with it hurricane-like conditions that include dangerous storm surge and heavy rainfall, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Lisa received its name Monday to become the 12th named storm of this Atlantic hurricane season. Picking up tropical storm-force winds, Lisa is forecast to continue tracking west through the Caribbean Sea over the next couple of days, approaching the northern coast of Honduras on Tuesday and the coast of Belize on Wednesday, according to the hurricane center.

On the current forecast track Lisa is forecast to make landfall across Belize on Wednesday as a strong tropical storm or a Category 1 hurricane, the NHC said.

A storm surge of 3 to 5 feet is forecast along the immediate coast of Belize in areas of onshore winds and 1 to 3 feet of surge is forecast for the Bay Islands of Honduras. Heavy rainfall could also produce flash flooding from northern Honduras northward to the eastern Yucatan Peninsula, the hurricane center said.

Lisa is also expected to produce up to 8 inches of rain across portions of Belize and the Bay Islands of Honduras, according to the NHC. Up to 6 inches of rain is expected across portions of northern Honduras, Jamaica, Guatemala and the eastern Yucatan peninsula. In the Cayman Islands and eastern Nicaragua, up to 2 inches of rain is expected, according to the hurricane center.

The storm currently has sustained winds of 45 mph and is moving west at 14 mph. It is located about 320 miles to the southeast of Grand Cayman, the center said.

Countries expected to be hit by the storm are already preparing. A hurricane watch is now in effect for the Bay Islands, and the Belize coast from north of Puerto Barrios to south of Chetumal, according to the hurricane center.

“A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area,” the NHC said. ” A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous.”

A tropical storm warning is also in effect for the Bay Islands. A tropical storm watch is in effect for Jamaica, the entire north coast of Honduras, Guatemala from its border with Honduras to Puerto Barrios, and Mexico from Chetumal to Punta Herrero.

Lisa’s arrival comes after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s projections in August called for a 60% chance of an above-normal season. Their forecast called for 14 to 20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or greater), of those named storms, forecasters believe six to 10 will be hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher) and three to five will be major hurricanes (winds of 111 mph or higher).

Currently the season has recorded 12 named storms, five hurricanes and two major hurricanes (Fiona and Ian). An average Atlantic hurricane season has 14 named storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes.

There is still one month left of the Atlantic Hurricane Season, which runs from June 1 to November 30.

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