Gov. Scott Declares State Of Emergency As Hurricane Irma Strengthens In Atlantic
Hurricane Irma is now a Category 5 storm in the Atlantic with wind speeds up to 180 mph. Central Florida News 13 meteorologist Maureen McCann has a look at the track for the next couple of days.
“It’s moving closer to the Leeward Islands today, and tomorrow it will turn to the northwest” and then the north, she said. “Beyond then, there is still uncertainty over where that forecast track will go with respect to Florida, but interests locally are encouraged to be prepared.”
At this time, central Florida is mostly just outside the northeastern tip of the so-called “five-day cone of uncertainty,” which means it’s simply too soon to tell exactly what path the storm will take if it moves in close to our area. That extended five-day forecast tentatively shows Irma skirting north of Cuba and into the Bahamas by the end of the work week before it makes a northerly turn toward the Florida peninsula.
Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency for all 67 counties here in Florida. At a press conference Tuesday morning he outlined what he’s been doing to prepare.
“I just a few minutes ago requested President Trump declare a ‘pre-landfall emergency’ for the entire state of Florida. That’s going to free up much-needed federal funding and assets,” he said. “I just a few minutes ago got off the phone with the administrator of FEMA, Brock Long, and went through what we think we might need. I’ve already activated 100 members of our National Guard. We have another 6,000 that we can activate. The first hundred will assist with preparedness.”
Hurricane warnings have been issued for the U.S. and British Virgin Islands, and for Puerto Rico, which has also declared a state of emergency and activated its National Guard. A hurricane watch now includes the southeast Bahamas.