#Irma [16.9 N / 59.1 W]
Irma is now a category 5 storm with maximum sustained winds of 185 mph.
Things are starting to feel real, for all living in the Lesser Antilles, as the threat nears tonight and tomorrow. Rain bands are bringing in showers and winds of 20mph are already in place, only to get stronger into this evening and here on out.
For those of us in the mainland U.S., preparation should be underway. By this, i mean gathering your supplies or making the decision in how to execute your plan.
1) Knowing where your local shelter is, especially if you need to bring pets. Not all shelters are pet-friendly.
2) If you are under an evacuation, where you would go;
3) Knowing where your important documents [medical, insurance, mortgages, etc] are located;
4) obtaining a refill in prescriptions if needed
There is still no way to tell you if this is going to hit Florida, or even where in FL. There is still model disagreement towards the final land-falling location. Some have it turning a hard right and bumping up along the East Coast (much like Matthew did last year) and heading towards GA/SC, some having it turning and running north, right through the spine of the state. Others still indicate the hard right turn through the Everglades and along the western half of the state. The point being that no one can still tell you exactly where, yet.
HOWEVER, understand this important thought: This system is large. The eye is about 30-35 miles wide. As of earlier this morning, hurricane force winds were extending out about 50 miles from the center. Tropical storm force winds were extending out 150 miles. Florida is only about 110 miles wide. Regardless of your exact location,the likelihood is that at a minimum, tropical storm force winds are in play in your area.
And again, while no one can tell you where, what you can actually see, are emergency managers springing into action, friends and neighbors pulling together to make sure each other stay informed, and there is a reason for this. Preparation is going to be key, because by the time we know for sure where landfall is, it will likely be too late to leave.
More to come…
Satellite animations available on our FB page: https://goo.gl/PQeTpf