Ian has left Cuba at dawn this Tuesday. As anticipated, he has headed north and constitutes a serious threat to Florida, mainly its west coast, where he will enter at one point with the destructive category 3.
Miami is not in the cone, although local authorities have declared a state of emergency since last week. This Tuesday some effects were already felt, but light rains and light winds. In any case, the National Hurricane Center has established a tropical storm alert in the eastern part of the peninsula, which in turn triggered the cancellation of classes, at all levels, from Tuesday to Thursday. The measure is likely to apply on Friday as well.
“A tropical storm watch was extended to Palm Beach County and areas of Miami-Dade and Broward. The main threat from tropical storm force winds will be gusts,” the National Weather Service in Miami said. A tornado watch was also issued from Key West to Jupiter on the east coast and Bonita Beach on the west coast.
The same cannot be said of the keys, where winds have already reached category three, although Ian’s eye is forecast to cross the sea about 200 miles west of Key West.
Rainfall of 4 to 6 inches is forecast with a maximum of 8 inches in the Keys and South Florida, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.
Hurricane force winds extend up to 35 miles from the center and tropical storm force winds extend up to 115.
The National Hurricane Center forecast that the center of the hurricane would head toward the southeastern Gulf of Mexico late Tuesday afternoon and approach the west coast of the state on Wednesday.
“It is expected to strengthen during the day when it is in the Gulf of Mexico and will be close to the west coast of Florida as a major hurricane,” the Center said. Possibly reach category 4 with winds of 209 km / h. In southwestern and central Florida, preparations continued.
In Miami, shelters are open, but on a limited basis because Ian is not yet, nor is he expected to be, a clear and immediate danger.
Governor Ron DeSantis has given a press conference in which he recommended people in the danger area to seek shelter and finish stocking up on basic necessities, gasoline and cash. But he expressed concern about the flooding.
“When you’re facing a possible 5-10 inches of water, it’s not something you want to face. This type of flooding has a deadly capacity. And mother nature is really not very helpful,” she said at a press conference in which she revealed that 2.5 million Floridians are under evacuation orders.