IRMA is an extremely intense & powerful hurricane…text book classic of a pure symmetrical system that occurs almost rarely. This is a storm that needs to be taken seriously & without hesitation. Evacuation from the FL Keys should be done NLT tomorrow. FL coastal areas NLT Late Thursday. If leaving by auto head to Valdosta GA for starters which is a good way point which may have to go even further north (Macon, GA). There is a degree of uncertainty of the storm’s track as to when she makes its turn to the north (from FLL to Palm Beach east coast of FL…then into Savanna, GA for east coast landfall…to the central FL Keys, Ft Meyers then west coast of FL north to Tallahassee for second land fall.
It is still early to make a call for Friday on…Before then, there is likely going to be devastation to the northern Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico, northern Dominican Republic, north coastal areas of Cuba, much of the eastern and central Bahamas. The NHC is doing a decent job with this storm and I have no reason to dispute their forecast track or intensity trends.
This is a good time for prayer for those not able to fend for themselves!!
Lee Chesneau, Senior Marine Meteorologist