Worst of Irma now underway for Middle Georgia, EMA officials say

Henrietta Strickland
September 12, 2017

Barbuda first felt the storm's power, as the Category 5 hurricane damaged 95 percent of buildings on the small island.

Hurricane Jose weakened overnight and could become a tropical storm later Tuesday, according to the 5 a.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center. Parts of Havana were inundated, and wind gusts of up to 130 miles per hour tore roofs off homes.

The National Weather Service has released new predictions of the path of Hurricane Irma.MyRadar image of Valdosta in the outer bands of the storm at 4:45 a.m.The National Weather Service has released this sustained winds map.

Durda said parts of South Florida are still dealing with some moderate to heavy rain from the outer bands of the storm, because it was such a big system.

Several hurricane warnings and watches now are in effect for Florida and the Tampa Bay region, meaning that within the next two days, hurricane-force winds in excess of 74 miles per hour likely will be a reality. His town might have taken the worst of the wind, but the devastating storm surge they all feared never materialized. More than 200,000 people waited in shelters across Florida. This storm is expected to speed up a little throughout the day.

Officials say three construction cranes cracked during the storm.

Florida's Division of Emergency Management said about noon on Monday that 6.52 million utility customers in the state were without power.

As Irma transitioned from a hurricane to a tropical storm, the cleanup effort across Florida begins, as residents try to pick up the pieces of what Irma left behind. This raised the overall death toll from Irma's powerful rampage through the Caribbean to 38. Another death was reported from a vehicle crash near Orlando. State media reported about 1 million people were evacuated from high-risk flood areas.

The French Government estimated damage at nearly $1.5 billion in just St. Bart's and the French St. Martin, with the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, describing the country as "barely habitable".

The small French island of St. Barthelemy and the French-Dutch island divided between St. Martin and St. Maarten also were badly damaged.

The head of FEMA, Brock Long, announced this morning he's heading to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands today.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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