8am EDT Cat 5 Hurricane IRMA Update.
Irma became the strongest Atlantic Basin hurricane storm yesterday and continues to plow through the British Virgin Islands this morning. It will be just Northeast of Puerto Rico this afternoon. This weather station on Barbuda in the Leeward Islands to the East of the Virgin Islands took a direct hit last night with 155 mph winds before it failed. Most likely went under 30 feet of surge and waves. CLICK ON IMAGES FOR LARGER VIEW.
The eyewall last night was beyond impressive with 185 mph sustained winds and gusts to 225 mph.
In addition to Irma there are two weaker Tropical Storms (Jose and Katia) that do not appear to impact the U.S.
Radar this morning shows the outer bands of Irma approaching Puerto Rico. You can monitor the storms progress with our interactive maps.
The official National Hurricane Center forecast track is likely to shift further East today with major threats to the East Coast of Florida but landfall may actually be in South Carolina!
The models have a wider range of uncertainty with land fall threats from South Florida to Maine...again everyone needs to monitor Irma along the East Coast!!! The most destructive part of any hurricane is the RIGHT FRONT QUADRANT where the winds and storm surge catastrophic. The LEFT REAR QUADRANT is not as severe unless you're within 25 miles of the eye center. This current path keeps Puerto Rico out of the most destructive sector but not so for the Eastern and Southern Bahamas which will likely have major damage.
For daily updates visit our Facebook and Twitter feeds.
STAY SAFE AND HEED THE ADVICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT OFFICIALS!