Tracking Irma, José, and Katia – Wednesday night update

(Credit: NOAA/NWS/NHC)

As of tonight (9/6), there are 3 active hurricanes in the Atlantic basin.  Here’s the latest, in brief, regarding the storms based on the 8 pm updates from the National Hurricane Center.

Hurricane Irma remains the most concerning, due to the damage its already caused plus its current strength, size and likely path in the days ahead.

Irma is a Category 5 storm with sustained winds around 185 mph and gusts higher than that.  Over the next 2 days, Irma may fluctuate somewhat in strength, but is likely to remain a major hurricane with either Category 4 or Category 5 status.

The most dangerous part of Irma, the eye wall, is skirting by north of Puerto Rico heading northwest on track to travel nearby the Dominican Republic and Haiti on Thursday.  Then, it gets close to Turks and Caicos and the southeastern Bahamas on Thursday evening.

In these affected areas, life-threatening conditions are expected.  Threats come from high storm surge, heavy rain (up to 20” over the next day in some areas), and high winds.  Flash floods and mudslides are also major concerns.

Hurricane José is following behind Irma, but is expected to take a northeasterly turn within a couple days and produces no current threat to land anywhere nearby.  At present, it’s a Category 1 storm, but is forecast to strengthen and has the potential to reach major hurricane (Cat 4 or Cat 5) status by Friday.

(Credit: NOAA/NWS/NHC)

Hurricane Katia
is hanging out in the Gulf of Mexico and not moving very much.  At last update, it had a speed of 3 mph, moving southeastward toward Mexico.  It has maximum sustained winds of 75 mph, making it a Category 1 hurricane and some strengthening is expected over the next couple of days.

(Credit: NOAA/NWS/NHC)

Flash floods, mudslides, high surf, and wind damage are expected in affected areas like northern Veracruz, southern Tamaulipas, and northeast Puebla.



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