SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — While Hurricane Epsilon is over 1,000 miles away from the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry, it’s still able to produce high surf and possible rip currents at area beaches this weekend.
If you do get stuck in a rip current, do not fight the current. Swim parallel to the shore to escape the current. If you can’t escape, float or tread water. If you need help, call or wave for assistance.
As of 11 am Saturday, Hurricane Epsilon is slightly stronger. It is still a category 1 hurricane with max sustained winds now up to 80 mph. It is moving to the northeast at 13 mph.
Epsilon is expected to maintain hurricane strength through tonight before weakening into a tropical depression tomorrow. The hurricane will continue to move in a northeast direction while gradually weakening.
While the storm never made landfall in Bermuda, large swells, rain, and gusty wind still battered the island when it was making its closest pass offshore.
Epsilon is the 10th hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season. Only four other years have seen this many hurricanes in the era of weather satellites: 1969, 1995, 2005, and 2017.
Storm Team 3 says this is only the second Epsilon on record. The other one occurred in the 2005 season, the year of Hurricane Katrina. That season ended with Zeta in December, the next Greek letter after Epsilon.
That means just one more named storm this year will tie the record for most names used in a single season, and two additional storms would make this year’s numbers unprecedented.
Besides tracking Epsilon, we have a disturbance in the Caribbean. It has a good chance of becoming a tropical depression sometime this weekend. If it gets even stronger and become a tropical storm, it will be named Zeta.
This disturbance will move north into the Gulf of Mexico early this week. Storm Team 3 will be monitoring this tropical wave as models continue to get a better hold of where it will go and how organized it will become. There is a possibility we could see another Gulf Coast landfall.