Update 4:30PM EST 24 November
Certainly not what they needed in Central America, as less than an hour after 110MPH Otto made landfall near the border of the eastern shores of Nicaragua and Costa Rica, a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck just offshore of their west coasts, complicating everything. There is now an even greater risk of mudslides, rockslides, etc. along and near the path of this very strong hurricane, still estimated to be a powerful Cat 2 as of the 4PM CST NHC Advisory.
Update 1PM EST 24 November
Hurricane Otto has just made landfall near the town of San Juan de Nicaragua on the southern Nicaraguan coast as a top-end Category 2 and borderline Major hurricane today. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 15 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles. Weakening is now underway as the cyclone traverses mountainous land, but increasing risk of flooding with rainfall of up to 20" in places likely.
Update 11PM EST 22 November
Hurricane Otto continues barley moving in the extreme southwestern Caribbean tonight, but is expected to increase in forward speed tomorrow and make landfall with 48 hours over southern Nicaragua or northern Costa Rica.
The Government of Nicaragua has issued a Hurricane Warning from Bluefields south to the Nicaragua/Costa Rica border. The Government of Costa Rica has issued a Hurricane Warning fro Limon northward to the Nicaragua/Costa Rica border. The Government of Nicaragua has issued a Tropical Storm Warning and a Hurricane Watch north of Bluefields to Sandy Bay Sirpi.
Update 11AM EST 22 November 2016
Otto continues to strengthen and nearly all model runs are trending stronger. These runs are also now south of where they have been and Otto could become the first Costa Rica hurricane landfall on record. Another change with the most recent NHC advisory is that it also now appears that Otto will probably survive across central America into the East Pac, which would be the first time a tropical cyclone has done so since 1996.
There is a chance that Otto strengthens more than forecast, and a high-end Cat 2 or even a Major at landfall is not out of the question. Regardless, Otto is expected to be a very strong hurricane into landfall at a minimum and preparations should be underway in Watch areas to protect life and property.
Update 1PM EST 21 November 2016
SIXTEEN has been upgraded to Tropical Storm Otto with maximum sustained winds estimated to be about 50MPH and a minimum central pressure of 1000mb, which could be conservative. Recon flights scheduled to fly in this afternoon have been canceled.
Interests along and near Otto's forecast path should consider making preparations for a strong tropical cyclone with the potential to produce life-threatening flooding rains.
Above: Nullshchool Visualization of global weather conditions analyzed and forecast by supercomputers
The main circulation center within a persistent area of monsoonal low pressure in the southwestern Caribbean has organized sufficiently to be classified as a tropical cyclone, and advisories have been started on TD16, the sixteenth official tropical cyclone of the historic 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season.
SIXTEEN is landlocked in the Caribbean and could make landfall as a strong tropical storm or hurricane this week. Prior to being classified, weather associated with its parent circulation had already claimed at least five lives due to flooding, and flooding will likely continue to be a significant threat as this slow moving tropical cyclone dumps copious precipitation near and along its path, possibly adding to the very high death toll from Atlantic basin tropical cyclones this year - 2016 is already the deadliest since the infamous Atlantic hurricane season of 2005.
Note: Storm links below may be delayed and still showing Invest 90L until they fully update.