September 9, 2017

With the latest weather updates, Florida Gov. Rick Scott urged Floridians not to ignore the danger of Hurricane Irma. "If you're in an evacuation zone, you have to evacuate," he said this morning. "You will not survive all this storm surge."

The Washington Post this morning:

The extraordinarily large and intense Hurricane Irma is drawing ever closer to South Florida and the first rain bands are pivoting across extreme South Florida. A hurricane catastrophe has become nearly unavoidable; it’s only a matter of what areas are hardest hit and how severely.

Computer model information overnight Friday early Saturday suggest Irma is most likely to track up Florida’s west coast. Although small shifts in the track are still possible, the Florida Keys, Naples, Fort Myers, and Tampa, all seem likely to be severely impacted.

Irrespective of the storm’s exact track, damaging winds are likely to blast most if not all of the Florida peninsula. With the storm still more than two hundred miles away, Miami International Airport clocked a wind gust of 57 mph just after 7:30 a.m. Saturday.

When it strikes Florida, Irma is likely to be comparable in strength to Hurricane Andrew, which devastated parts of South Florida in 1992, but much larger in size.

“Irma is likely to make landfall in Florida as a dangerous major hurricane, and will bring life-threatening wind impacts to much of the state,” the National Hurricane Center said.

I read last night that an estimated 15,000 people have refused to evacuate from the Florida Keys. Good luck, you'll need it.

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