NHC on Irma: 'Too soon to specify timing and magnitude of impact'

FSU Football

FSU Football

Hurricanes and tropical storms move fast - with Category 5 Hurricane Irma, that's 185-mph-winds fast.

The two French territories have been placed on maximum alert and residents have been ordered to stay indoors as Irma approaches as the strongest storm ever recorded in the Atlantic.

The NHC did not issue any coastal watches or warnings for Jose, which is now located some 1,505 miles (2,420 kilometers) east of the Lesser Antilles.

At 10 p.m., Irma was moving west-northwest at 15 miles per hour and that motion was expected to continue Wednesday and Thursday. Jose is expected to become classified as a hurricane by Friday according to the National Hurricane Center.

Winds of up to 185mph (297kph) have hit Barbuda as Hurricane Irma passed directly over the Caribbean island.

Hurricane Irma is a very real, powerful Category 5 storm that could soon target the Caribbean islands and South Florida.

US disaster management teams are dealing with the after effects of Hurricane Harvey, which was a Category 4 storm when it made landfall late last month in the state of Texas and dropped historic amounts of rain as it stalled over the region.

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The "potentially catastrophic" storm, as described by the NWS, is expected to skirt the northern parts of Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Cuba over the next three days.

Monroe County spokeswoman Cammy Clark said in a news release that a mandatory evacuation of tourists would begin at sunrise Wednesday.

"It is too early to determine what direct impacts Irma might have on the continental United States", the National Weather Service said on Tuesday.

Miami's skyline is filled with high-rises and also many tower cranes, which are now a cause for concern as Hurricane Irma marches toward South Florida. It's now located 1,400 miles from Jacksonville and is moving west at 14 mph.

In Florida, Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency and activated 100 members of the Florida Air and Army National Guard to help with planning across the state. The threat posed to the USA mainland by Irma, described by NHC forecasters as a "potentially catastrophic" storm, loomed as Texas and Louisiana continued to reel from widespread destructive flooding from Hurricane Harvey.

So far, the state of Florida and Puerto Rico have already issued a State of Emergency.

"We don't know what is in store, but we all have to be prepared", Scott said. The others are Allen (1980), the Labor Day Hurricane of 1935, Gilbert (1988), and Wilma (2005).

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