HOLT, Fla., Sept. 5, 2017–The much-anticipated turn of Hurricane Irma is expected to begin tonight according to the National Hurricane Center.
A turn toward the west-northwest is forecast to begin tonight and continue for the next couple of days.
Where and how much it turns will depend on how much effect Holt and the surrounding community will experience from this storm.
The NHC is referring to Irma as an extremely dangerous category 5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.
With winds peaking at 149-to-154 mph, this makes Irma the strongest hurricane in the Atlantic basin outside of the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico in the NHC records.
The NHC expects Irma to remain very intense throughout much of the forecast period.
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, according to the NHC.
Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 60 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles.
Hurricane models are trending toward the east coast of Florida. However, these models have been trending back and forth from east coast to west coast every 12 hours as environmental conditions around Irma change.
While it’s still too early to determine how Irma will affect the state, the governor and the president have declared Florida a state of emergency.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for all 67 counties in Florida Sept. 4. Doing so gives state, federal and local governments the resources and flexibility to prepare for this storm.
Today, President Trump signed a declaration of emergency for Florida which ordered federal assistance to supplement state, tribal and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from Hurricane Irma.
This declaration authorizes the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate all disaster relief efforts.
The NHC will update the warning cone image at 10 p.m. CDT.