Charlotte and Sarasota counties were put back on a tropical storm warning late Tuesday evening as Eta started shifting east.

The rest of the west coast of Florida was placed either on a warning or a watch for the tropical storm.

The National Hurricane Center swung the projected path 150 miles east on Tuesday, which would send Eta grinding up Florida's west coast as a tropical storm all week before making landfall in the Panhandle on Sunday.

The storm could drench an already waterlogged South Florida through Wednesday, but forecasters don't expect Eta's winds to reach the southeast coast.

Eta was about 110 miles north of the western tip of Cuba at 7 p.m. with maximum sustained winds near 60 mph with higher gusts, according to the National Hurricane Center. 

While some additional strengthening is possible in the next day or so, including a chance that Eta could become a hurricane, the storm should start to see some weakening Thursday, according to the hurricane center.

Swells generated by Eta are expected to affect the northern coast of Cuba, the northwestern Bahamas, southern and western Florida and the Florida Keys during the next day or so and will likely cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions, according to the hurricane center.

In terms of rainfall, western Cuba should expect to see an additional 3 to 5 inches of new rain Tuesday. South Florida should expect to see an additional 1 to 2 inches of new rain, forecasters said.

The hurricane center estimates that isolated areas in Cuba will have seen about 25 inches of rain associated with Eta the past few days. In South Florida, isolated areas will have seen 20 inches of rain.

"Flash and river flooding will be possible in western Cuba, along with landslides in areas of higher terrain. Additional flash and urban flooding will be possible in South Florida, especially across previously inundated areas, and eventually along portions of West Florida and the Sun Coast. Flash and urban flooding will also be possible for western Cuba," forecasters wrote Tuesday.

Tropical-storm-force winds will also be possible overnight in the Dry Tortugas and also Cuban provinces of La Habana, Artemisa, Mayabeque, Pinar del Rio, and the Isle of Youth, which are all under a tropical storm watch.

The hurricane center is also tracking Subtropical Storm Theta, the record-breaking 29th named storm of the 2020 season, and a tropical wave in the Caribbean.

Forecasters gave the wave an 80% chance of strengthening to a tropical depression in the next five days and a 20% chance of strengthening by Thursday. If it strengthens further into a tropical storm, it would be named Iota.


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