A disturbance moving across Central America may transition from a named Eastern Pacific Basin storm to a named Atlantic Basin storm in the coming days.
Known as Amanda, the short-lived tropical cyclone is currently located over Guatemala. It was a tropical storm but has since weakened, and the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami, Florida believes it’ll further degenerate into a remnant low or completely dissipate over the mountains of Central America later today or tonight.
However, as the remnants of Amanda move northwestward within a broader area of disturbed weather, they could re-emerge over water in the southern Gulf of Mexico within the Bay of Campeche by tomorrow. According to the NHC, environmental conditions appear conducive to support some development and a new tropical depression could form while the system moves little through the middle of this week. Computer forecast guidance has not been consistent in what to do with this system in the Gulf, suggesting a variety of scenarios over the next week.
While renewed tropical cyclone formation remains in question, the lingering impacts from Amanda will be felt across Central America. Through the middle of the week, Amanda or its remnants are expected to produce total rain accumulations of 10-15″ over El Salvador, southern Guatemala, western Honduras, and the Mexican states of Tabasco and Veracruz. Amounts of 5-10″ are also possible over northwestern Nicaragua, Belize, and the Mexican states of Quintana Roo, Campeche, Chiapas, and Oaxaca. Isolated maximum amounts of 20″ could also fall over portions of El Salvador, southern Guatemala, Tabasco, and Veracruz. Such heavy rain in mountainous and hilly terrain could create flash floods and mud / rock slides.
If a new system were to form in the Bay of Campeche or Gulf of Mexico over time, it would be named Cristobal, the third name to be used in the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season which officially starts tomorrow. The Atlantic Hurricane season runs through the end of November; experts believe the season will be an active one with an above normal number of storms and hurricanes.