Hurricane Nate has not yet formed but if its does it could hit parts of the Gulf Coast this weekend, according to the latest update from the NOAA (National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration).

The USA and the Caribbean are still recovering from the destructive impact of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.

But eyes are now turning to what could become the next named hurricane of the season: Hurricane Nate. 

The NOAA National Hurricane Center (NHC), based in Miami, has said Tropical Depression 16 is set to turn into Tropical Storm Nate over the Caribbean Sea soon. 

The NHC’s latest map shows that the storm is on track to hit Nicaragua and Honduras today on its path towards the Gulf of Mexico and the USA. 

The storm is on track to hit the Florida Panhandle on America’s Gulf Coast at 8pm on Sunday. It will then pass over Alabama and Georgia. 

The NHC’s update added: “The depression is forecast to strengthen and bring tropical storm conditions to portions of Nicaragua and Honduras through early Friday.

“Heavy rainfall could produce life-threatening flash flooding and mud slides in portions of Nicaragua, Honduras, Costa Rica, and Panama through Friday night.

“The system could be near hurricane intensity when it approaches the Yucatan Peninsula late Friday or Saturday, bringing direct impacts from wind, storm surge, and heavy rainfall, and a hurricane watch has been issued for a portion of this area.

“The system is forecast to continue strengthening over the Gulf of Mexico and could affect portions of the northern Gulf Coast as a hurricane this weekend, with direct impacts from wind, storm surge, and heavy rainfall.  

However, it is too early to specify the timing, location, or magnitude of these impacts.  

“Residents along the Gulf Coast from Louisiana to Florida should monitor the progress of this system for the next several days and heed any advice given by local officials.”