As Houston continues to recover from devastating Tropical Storm Harvey, a new, more powerful storm is forming and headed towards Florida, sending residents in the Caribbean and along the East Coast swarming for preparation.
Here is everything we know so far about Hurricane Irma:
– The National Hurricane Center has declared Hurricane Irma a Category 5 storm with winds upwards of 175 mph.
– As of Tuesday morning, Irma was in the Atlantic about 270 miles east of Antigua and Barbuda heading west. The forecast has it near or over Antigua and Barbuda by late Tuesday, early Wednesday. The storm should hit the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico on Wednesday afternoon.
– It’s unclear of the impact Hurricane Irma will have on the United States.
– Florida Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency across state. “In Florida, we always prepare for the worst and hope for the best, and while the exact path of Irma is not absolutely known at this time, we cannot afford to not be prepared,” Scott said.
– Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossellṍ declared a state of emergency and activated the National Guard on Monday. Public schools and businesses remain closed.
– A Hurricane Warning has been issued for the following countries:
- U.S Virgin Islands
- Puerto Rico, Vieques, Culebra
- British Virgin Islands
- St. Martin and Saint Barthelemy
- Antigua, Barbuda, Anguilla, Montserrat, St. Kitts, and Nevis
- Saba, St. Eustatius, and Sint Maarten
– It’s possible that Irma may start heading to eastern Florida and up the East Coast by this weekend. Meteorologist Pedram Javaheri warns, “Everyone wants to see this at least meander away from the United States. The strength, the positioning, the timing of that troughs coming in to the eastern coastline will dictate exactly where Irma ends up.”
We’ll keep you updated with the latest.