Irma sent more than a metre of ocean water into downtown Charleston, South Carolina, as the storm’s centre passed 400km away.
“On the forecast track, the center of Irma should move near or over the southwest and west coast of the Florida Peninsula later today through tonight”.
Southside Virginia appears likely to escape much of the wrath of Hurricane Irma, the monster storm that crashed in southern Florida on Sunday.
Even after the evacuation order was issued, they talked of riding out Irma at home. This makes it easier to know where down power lines may be possible following the storm.
If Irma sticks to a more westward inland path, it could arrive in Georgia as a weakened tropical storm. While the strength of the winds might be less intense, the potential for severe weather will increase.
Around 400 meals have been served in shelters over the past few days. Still a risky storm, the National Weather Service has issued a Tropical Storm Warning for several counties in North and Central Georgia including Douglas, Newton, De Kalb, Fulton, Walton, Rockdale, Cobb, Gwinnett, Fulton, Cherokee, Forsyth, Fayette, Clayton, and Henry County until 12:25 am Mon Sep 11. The company has experienced widespread, extensive damage due to high winds, heavy rain and fallen trees as a result of the historic hurricane. In addition, a possibility of river flooding is predicted as well as 5 – 10 inches of forecasted rain. Meteorologist Keith Stellman said Atlanta’s airport recorded sustained winds of 45 miles per hour (72 kph) with gusts up to 64 miles per hour (103 kph).
There are approximately 870,000 Georgia Power customers now without power – equivalent to almost 50 percent of the company’s total residential customer base. This track could change.
“We’re still just kind of putting it back together and BAM, it came again and destroyed it”, Spalding said.
Governor Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency in six Georgia counties in preparation for Hurricane Irma, according to a press release from the governor’s office. In Florida, evacuations are beginning in and around south Florida, including the Keys and Miami Beach areas.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott suggested people take a level of “aggressive preparation” as the risky storm approaches.
The huge storm – 80 miles wide with winds of 125 mph as it leaves Cuba and turns toward Florida – prompted one of the largest evacuations in US history.
Smaller communities also were inundated the entire SC town of Edisto Beach, population 530, was covered with several feet of water, Mayor Jane Darby said, despite a $17 million dune restoration project following Matthew’s destruction.