Hurricane Irma Strikes Florida
Hurricane Irma strikes Florida as a Category 4. It is hitting Florida with torrential rains along with wind gusts in excess of 100 mph. Storm surges are filling the streets. As the hurricane hit Florida at 9:10 AM, in Cudjoe Key, it was the first time on record that two Category 4 storms, Irma and Harvey made landfall in the US.
Already more than one million people in South Florida lost power a half hour after the hurricane struck. This was before the worst of the hurricane forces started to reach the mainland. Those still on the islands, in the Keys, reported dire conditions. Editor Larry Kahn reported, “Everything is underwater. I mean everything.” He made his report from a shelter in Marathon in the Middle Keys.
The National Hurricane Center warned everyone of wandering outside when things seem to calm down. The center said, “Do not venture outside when the calm eye of the hurricane passes over, as dangerous winds will return very quickly when the eye moves away.”
As Irma moves on from the Keys, the storm is expected to make its way up the west coast of Florida. However, the hurricane is so huge that wind and rain can reach across the entire state. There are still large population centers, like Tampa, that are still in the hurricane’s direct path.
Hurricane Irma is expected to show her full might around 9 PM Eastern, according to the National Weather Service. She will be attacking major cities on Florida’s west coast such as St. Petersburg and Tampa.
President Donald Trump, spending the weekend at Camp David tweeted, “The U.S. Coast Guard, FEMA and all Federal and State brave people are ready. Here comes Irma. God bless everyone!”