Although initial reports by meteorologists suggested that Hurricane Irma could enter a category 4 storm, news information insists Irma might quickly escalate to a Category 5 emergency.
Hurricane Irma became Category 5 disaster, as per the Saffir-Simpson wind scale, moving at a speed of 156 mph. however, new details state Irma has been circling at a speed of 175 mph, with chances of rising to 186 mph.
— Ryan Maue (@RyanMaue) September 5, 2017
“Oh, my … Hurricane #Irma just entered “beast mode” … incredible convection flaring. Satellite estimates now > T 7.0 and Category 5,” he tweeted.
— Steve Chenevey FOX5 (@stevechenevey) September 5, 2017
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued a statement on the storm’s specifics:
“At 1100 AM AST (1500 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Irma was located near latitude 16.8 North, longitude 58.4 West. Irma is moving toward the west near 14 mph (22 km/h), and this general motion is expected to continue today, followed by a turn toward the west-northwest tonight. On the forecast track, the extremely dangerous core of Irma is forecast to move over portions of the northern Leeward Islands tonight and early Wednesday,” it said.
“Reports from an Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that the maximum sustained winds are near 180 mph (285 km/h) with higher gusts. Irma is an extremely dangerous category 5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some fluctuations in intensity are likely during the next day or two, but Irma is forecast to remain a powerful category 4 or 5 hurricane during the next couple of days,” it added.
— Philip Klotzbach (@philklotzbach) September 5, 2017
Hurricane Irma is set to threaten various areas, including the Caribbeans, Puerto Rico, Antigua, the British and U.S. Virgin Islands, Anguilla; Montserrat, St. Kitts; Nevis, Saba; St. Eustatius, St. Martin/Sint Maarten and St. Barts.
Other potential areas of a strike are Cuba and Haiti.
Whether Hurricane Irma is going to make a landfall in America, is still uncertain.
Forecaster Brian McNoldy tried to analyze Hurricane Irma’s movement as well:
“As far as timing goes, south Florida would be looking at the worst conditions on Sunday-Monday (10th-11th), with tropical storm force winds arriving on Saturday (9th). It remains to be seen what ‘worst’ means as that is dependent on precisely how close the eyewall gets to a certain location,” he wrote.
McNoldy noted various areas are under the Hurricane’s threat:
“If it turns north just prior to reaching the Florida peninsula, the Carolinas become a likely target, and the worst conditions would be on Monday-Tuesday (11th-12th) with tropical storm conditions arriving Monday (11th),” he stated.
Even though Irma’s landfall in Texas in unlikely, the probability is not excluded.
“At this point, a westward track into and across the Gulf of Mexico seems very unlikely, but given the model trends, I wouldn’t rule it out completely just yet. However, note the scenario where the storm turns north just after passing the Florida peninsula and tracks up the west coast of Florida. This threat cannot be ignored either,” he wrote.