5A: #Irma a Cat-4 Hurricane Taking Aim at Florida

At 500 AM EDT (0900 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Irma was located near latitude 21.7 North, longitude 73.8 West. Irma is moving toward the west-northwest near 16 mph (26 km/h), and this motion is expected to continue for the next day or so with a decrease in forward speed.  A turn toward the northwest is expected by late Saturday.  On the forecast track, the eye of Irma should continue to move westward away from the Turks and Caicos Islands and toward the southeastern Bahamas this morning.  The core of the hurricane will then move between the north coast of Cuba and the Bahamas during the next day or two, and be near the Florida Keys and the southern Florida Peninsula Sunday morning.

Maximum sustained winds are near 155 mph (250 km/h) with higher gusts.  Irma is a category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.  Some fluctuations in intensity are likely during the next day or two, but Irma is forecast to remain a powerful category 4 hurricane during the next couple of days.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles (110 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 185 miles (295 km).

The estimated minimum central pressure is 925 mb (27.32 inches).


A Hurricane Warning is in effect for... * Jupiter Inlet southward around the Florida peninsula to Bonita Beach * Florida Keys * Lake Okeechobee * Florida Bay * Haiti from the northern border with the Dominican Republic to Le Mole St. Nicholas * Southeastern Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands * Cuban provinces of Camaguey, Ciego de Avila, Sancti Spiritus, and Villa Clara * Central Bahamas * Northwestern Bahamas

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for... * North of Jupiter Inlet to Sebastian Inlet * North of Bonita Beach to Anna Maria Island * Cuban provinces of Guantanamo, Holguin, Las Tunas and Matanzas

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for... * Haiti from south of Le Mole St. Nicholas to Port-Au-Prince * Cuban provinces of Guantanamo, Holguin, and Las Tunas

Nathalie Rodriguez

Nathalie Rodriguez

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