Regal Assets Analytics

spot_imgspot_imgspot_imgspot_img

Disclosure: The owners of this website may be paid to recommend Regal Assets. The content on this website, including any positive reviews of Regal Assets and other reviews, may not be neutral or independent.

spot_imgspot_imgspot_imgspot_img

Disclosure: The owners of this website may be paid to recommend Regal Assets. The content on this website, including any positive reviews of Regal Assets and other reviews, may not be neutral or independent.

Home World News Washington Post World News Hurricane Ian hits Cuba, targets Florida as possible Cat 4

Hurricane Ian hits Cuba, targets Florida as possible Cat 4

0
24

HAVANA — Hurricane Ian’s rain and wind ravaged the western tip of Cuba, where authorities have evacuated 50,000 people, as it roared on a path that could hit Florida’s west coast as a Category 4 hurricane.

Officials in Cuba’s Pinar del Rio province have set up 55 shelters, called emergency services and taken steps to protect crops in Cuba’s main tobacco region ahead of Ian’s expected landfall early Tuesday as a major hurricane. The US National Hurricane Center said the island’s west coast could see as much as 4.3 meters (4.3 meters) of storm surge.

“Cuba expects extreme hurricane-force winds, including life-threatening storm surges and heavy rainfall,” senior hurricane center specialist Daniel Brown told The Associated Press.

After passing through Cuba, Ian was predicted to strengthen further over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico before reaching Florida as early as Wednesday as a Category 4 storm with top winds of 140 mph (225 km/h).

On Monday, Tampa and St. Petersburg looked like the most likely targets for their first direct hit by a major hurricane since 1921.

“Please treat this storm seriously. It’s the real deal. This is not a drill,” Timothy Dudley, director of Hillsborough County Emergency Management, told a news conference Monday about storm preparations in Tampa.

In Havana, fishermen pulled their boats out of the water along the famous Malecon seafront boulevard on Monday, and city workers were busy unblocking storm drains for the expected rain.

Havana resident Adyz Ladron said he is concerned about the potential for rising water from the storm.

“I’m very scared because my house will be completely submerged, with water up to here,” he said, pointing to his chest.

In Havana’s El Fanguito, a poor neighborhood near the Almendares River, residents packed what they could to leave their homes.

“I hope we escape this, because it would mean our end. We already have so little,” said health worker Abel Rodrigues.

On Monday night, Ian moved northwest at 13 mph (20 km/h), about 105 miles (170 kilometers) east-southeast of Cuba’s western tip, with sustained winds increasing to 105 mph (165 km/h).

Ian will not hover over Cuba, but will slow down over the Gulf of Mexico, which is broadening and stronger, “which will have the potential to cause significant wind and storm surge effects along Florida’s west coast,” the hurricane center said.

A wave of up to 3 meters of ocean water and 10 inches (25 centimeters) of rain was predicted over the Tampa Bay area, with as much as 15 inches (38 centimeters) inches in remote areas. That’s enough water to flood coastal communities.

As many as 300,000 people could be evacuated in the low-lying areas of Hillsborough County alone, county administrator Bonnie Wise said. Some of those evacuations began Monday afternoon in the most vulnerable areas, with schools and other locations opening up as shelters.

“We must do everything we can to protect our residents. Time is of the essence,” Wise said.

Floridians queued for hours in Tampa collecting bags of sand and clearing store shelves with bottled water. Governor Ron DeSantis declared a statewide state of emergency, warning that Ian could strike large swathes of the state, cut power and cut fuel supplies as it swirls north along the state’s Gulf Coast.

“You have a significant storm that could eventually become a Category 4 hurricane,” DeSantis said at a news conference. “That is going to cause a huge storm surge. You get floods. You will have many different effects.”

DeSantis said the state has suspended tolls around the Tampa Bay area and has mobilized 5,000 Florida State Guard troops, with another 2,000 on standby in neighboring states.

President Joe Biden also declared an emergency and authorized the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate disaster response and provide assistance to protect life and property. The president has postponed a planned Tuesday trip to Florida because of the storm.

Playing it safe, NASA planned to slowly roll its moon rocket from the launch pad to its Kennedy Space Center hangar, delaying the test flight for weeks.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced Monday night that the soccer team is moving soccer operations to the Miami area in preparation for next weekend’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Buccaneers said the team will leave Tampa on Tuesday.

Flash flooding was forecast for much of the Florida peninsula, with a chance of heavy rainfall in the southeastern United States later this week. With tropical storm winds extending 115 miles (185 kilometers) from downtown Ian, Watches covered the Florida Keys as far as Lake Okeechobee.

Associated Press contributors include Curt Anderson in St. Petersburg, Florida, Anthony Izaguirre in Tallahassee, Florida, and Julie Walker in New York.



Source link

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here