Home Weather NOW A Category 5 – Tracking Powerful Hurricane Irma; Mixed Weather Here

NOW A Category 5 – Tracking Powerful Hurricane Irma; Mixed Weather Here

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UPDATE: Hurricane Irma is n0w a category 5 storm with winds at 175 MPH.

If you live along Florida’s southwest coast, don’t wait. Take the next few days to get ready for the impacts of powerful Hurricane Irma, which will be in our neighborhood this weekend. While the exact track can’t be forecast yet, we need to realize that a large and dangerous major hurricane will be making a northward turn near (or possibly over) our area. Examine your hurricane plan (including where you’ll stay if you have to evacuate), get any supplies you don’t already have, and have your shutters installed by late Friday. In this case, waiting for more information before taking precautions is NOT a good thing.

powerfulHere’s some basic information on Irma as of 5 am Tuesday. It was located near 16.6 North, %7.0 West, and was moving west at 14 miles per hour. Maximum sustained winds were 150 miles per hour — a strong category 4. Some fluctuations in strength are likely, but Irma is expected to remain a very dangerous major hurricane during at least the next 5 days. Hurricane warnings are in effect for the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, and Irma is also forecast to pass near or over the Turks and Caicos.

Here at home, Tuesday features sun and clouds and some afternoon storms along the Gulf breeze. Highs on Tuesday will be in the low 90s.

Wednesday will bring a mix of sun and clouds, as well a few late-day storms. Wednesday’s highs will be in the low 90s.

Look for a similar early September mix on Thursday — sun, clouds, and afternoon storms in spots. Thursday’s highs will be in the low 90s.

Friday’s forecast includes sun, clouds, and a stray storm as we wrap up hurricane preparations.

Look for conditions to deteriorate throughout Saturday, including tropical storm force winds.

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Copyright 2017 SW Florida Reporter
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Donna Thomas has studied hurricanes for two decades. She holds a PhD in history when her experience with Hurricane Andrew ultimately led her to earn a degree in broadcast meteorology from Mississippi State University. Donna spent 15 years at WFOR-TV (CBS4 in Miami-Fort Lauderdale), where she worked as a weather producer with hurricane experts Bryan Norcross and David Bernard. She also produced hurricane specials and weather-related features and news coverage, as well as serving as pool TV producer at the National Hurricane Center during the 2004 and 2005 seasons. Donna also served as a researcher on NOAA’s Atlantic Hurricane Database Reanalysis Project. Donna specializes in Florida’s hurricane history.