Hurricane Ian updates: Florida counties face evacuations from category 2 storm as winds reach 100mph

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Central Florida stores struggle to keep water on shelves for Tropical Storm Ian

Mandatory evacuations are underway in parts of Florida amid warnings of life-threatening conditions from Hurricane Ian in the coming days.

The powerful system will hit the Cayman Islands and western Cuba on Monday and is expected to hit Florida by midweek as a major Category 4 hurricane. Conditions in western Cuba will worsen tonight with strong winds and storm surges up to 14 feet.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has warned people to prepare, but not to panic. “This is a very, very big hurricane right now,” Governor DeSantis said.

About 300,000 people are being evacuated in parts of Hillsborough County, including the city of Tampa, along with Manatee and Hernando counties. Pinellas County, which includes the cities of Clearwater and St. Petersburg, will begin mandatory evacuations Monday evening at 6 p.m.

There are chances of flash flooding, high winds, storm surge up to 10 feet, and possible isolated tornadoes along Florida’s Gulf Coast with impacts starting up to 36 hours before peak.

As Florida prepares, Atlantic Canada and parts of the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico, are still recovering from Hurricane Fiona last week.

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ISS captures the very large image of Hurricane Ian

The International Space Station passed high above Hurricane Ian on Monday, resulting in a spectacular angle on the growing storm.

The clip captures the global spiral of the hurricane as it heads toward western Cuba tonight.

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St. Pete-Clearwater Airport to be shut down for Hurricane Ian

As Hurricane Ian makes its way into the US, towns and cities across Florida wait in tense anticipation.

St Pete-Clearwater International Airport announced Tuesday it will close Tuesday afternoon due to mandatory evacuation orders in Pinellas County, which includes numerous low-lying, west-facing beaches on the Gulf of Mexico.

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Florida State cancels classes as Ian approaches

The state of Florida canceled classes for its student population of more than 30,000 as Hurricane Ian continues to gain strength.

Classes are Tuesday through Friday, while the campus is closed Thursday through Friday, the university said in an update on Monday.

“As we continue to monitor Hurricane Ian, the safety of our FSU family remains our top priority,” University President Richard McCullough said in a statement.

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Hurricane Ian now Category 2 as winds reach 100mph

Hurricane Ian is now a Category 2 storm with sustained winds up to 100 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center’s update at 5 p.m. EDT.

“It’s really starting to build up and getting impressive, indicative of a storm that’s still getting stronger,” said Jamie Rhome of the NHC.

Forecasts showed the storm moved across the Florida Keys early Wednesday morning, before moving on to the rest of Florida later in the day, with coastal areas “very, very vulnerable to storm surge,” Mr. Rhome added.

The NHC also said in a statement that “life-threatening storm surge, hurricane-force winds, flash flooding and possible mudslides are expected in parts of western Cuba starting tonight.”

A Prediction of Hurricane Ian .’s Projected Path

(National Hurricane Center)

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Hurricane Ian evacuations underway as Florida braces for impact: ‘Get out now’

Mandatory evacuations have been issued for hundreds of thousands of people as Hurricane Ian charts a path toward Florida’s west coast with high winds, flash flooding, storm surge and possible tornadoes.

Governor Ron DeSantis warned Floridians to prepare, but not panic, during a briefing Monday after the storm upgraded to a Category 1 hurricane.

“This is a very, very big hurricane right now,” Governor DeSantis said. He added that the hurricane’s path was still uncertain, meaning it could “tumble” into or away from the peninsula.

Florida’s Gulf Coast is expected to be badly hit, with conditions deteriorating for up to 36 hours before the peak. Meteorologists report that Ian will be boosted by warmer waters in the Gulf of Mexico and could hit Florida as a monstrous Category 4 hurricane with top winds of 140 mph (225 km/h).

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7,000 National Guard troops mobilized in storm response

As Hurricane Ian moves toward the Caribbean and Florida, 7,000 National Guard troops have been mobilized to assist with storm response, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said Monday.

Speaking at the state’s Emergency Operations Center in Tallahassee, he said 5,000 security guards were coming from Florida, and they will be joined by an additional 2,000 troops from Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina.

The governor added that five urban search and rescue teams, as well as the US Coast Guard and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission are at attention.

A state of emergency is in effect in all 67 Florida counties.

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Hurricane Ian picks up on approach to Cuba, no major damage to Cayman Islands

Hurricane Ian strengthened as it approached the western tip of Cuba, en route to hit Florida’s west coast as a major hurricane as early as Wednesday.

According to state media, authorities in Cuba suspended classes in Pinar del Rio province, sent medical personnel and emergency services, planned to evacuate 20 communities “in the shortest possible time” and took steps to divert food and other crops into the country. protect warehouses.

“Cuba expects extreme hurricane-force winds, also life-threatening storm surge and heavy rainfall,” senior specialist Daniel Brown of the US National Hurricane Center told The Associated Press.

The hurricane center predicted that areas on Cuba’s west coast could see storm surge as high as 4.3 meters (4.3 meters) Monday evening or early Tuesday.

A resident uses plastic as protection from the rain in Batabano, Cuba on Monday as Hurricane Ian approaches

(AP)

In Havana, fishermen pulled their boats out of the water along the famous Malecon, the coastal promenade, and city workers were busy unclogging storm drains before the expected rain fell.

Havana resident Adyz Ladron, 35, 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.

On Monday afternoon, Ian moved northwest at 20 kph, about 310 km southeast of Cuba’s western tip, with sustained winds increasing to 85 mph (135 kph).

The center of the hurricane moved west of the Cayman Islands. No major damage was reported there on Monday, and residents took to the streets again when the wind died down.

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Floridians prepare for Hurricane Ian amid storm surge warnings of several feet

Orange County residents fill sandbags in Baldwin Park to protect their homes in preparation for Hurricane Ian on Monday, September 26, 2022 in Orlando, Florida.

Orange County residents fill sandbags in Baldwin Park to protect their homes in preparation for Hurricane Ian on Monday, September 26, 2022 in Orlando, Florida

(AP)

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National Hurricane Center – last 2pm update

The National Hurricane Center released the latest update on Hurricane Ian at 2 p.m. (EST).

The government of the Cayman Islands has changed the hurricane warning for Grand Cayman to a tropical storm warning.

A hurricane warning is in effect for:

– Cuban provinces of Isla de Juventud, Pinar del Rio and Artemisa

A tropical storm warning is in effect for:

– Cuban provinces of La Habana, Mayabeque and Matanzas

– Lower Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge west to Key West

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for:

– Florida Keys from the Card Sound Bridge west to Key West

– Anclote River south to the Card Sound Bridge

A hurricane watch is in effect for:

– Englewood to the Anclote River, including Tampa Bay

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for:

– Lesser Caiman and Caiman Brac

– Englewood south to Flamingo

– Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge to the Channel 5 Bridge

A hurricane warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case within 24 to 36 hours. Preparations to protect life and property must be urgently brought to completion

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area within 36 hours

A Storm Surge Watch means there is a potential for life-threatening flooding, from rising water flowing inland from the shoreline, in the locations indicated over the next 48 hours

A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the expected first occurrence of tropical storm winds, conditions that make outdoor preparations difficult or dangerous

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the monitoring area, usually within 48 hours

Source: NOAA/National Hurricane Center

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Hurricane Ian approaches Cuba

Hurricane Ian strengthened as it approached the western tip of Cuba on a trail that would hit Florida’s west coast as a major hurricane Wednesday.

Ian was predicted to hit the western tip of Cuba as a major hurricane and then become an even stronger Category 4 with top winds of 140 mph (225 kph) over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico before hitting Florida .

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 an exercise,” Timothy Dudley, director of Hillsborough County Emergency Management, told a news conference about storm preparations in Tampa.


The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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