The American President, Joe Bidendeclared a state of emergency in Florida for state teams to join local efforts against Tropical Storm Ian – with a view to becoming a “hurricane” – which has been hitting this state since Friday, while Cuba already announced preventive measures protection against eventual passage through its territory.
“Ian will start to get stronger quickly tonight,” warned the United States National Hurricane Center (NHC) in their newsletter.
Ian is expected to “become a hurricane early Monday” and later tonight or early Tuesday “a major hurricane” before reaching western Cuba, he said.
“Major” cyclones are those with winds of at least 178 kilometers per hour, that is, categories 3, 4 and 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale.
The NHC issued a “Hurricane Warning” for Cuba and forecast “significant impacts” of winds and storm surges in the west of the island.
5pm EDT key messages for #Ian: Heavy rain causing flooding and mudslides in areas of high terrain are possible over Jamaica and Cuba. Life-threatening storm surges and hurricane-force winds are expected in portions of western Cuba by late Monday. https://t.co/tW4KeFW0gB pic.twitter.com/ckC2vXXJIe
— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) September 25, 2022
The warning applies to Grand Cayman, a British overseas territory, and to the Cuban provinces of Isla de Juventud, Pinar del Río, and Artemisa.
Ian should then advance through the Gulf of Mexico towards Florida, which has already begun to take precautions, the AFP agency reported.
“The President’s action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate all disaster relief efforts for the purpose of alleviating hardship and suffering caused by the emergency and provide adequate assistance for the required cases,” the White House said, according to the DPA agency.
These emergency measures are authorized by Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives and protect property and public health and safety, and to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in at least 25 counties and the Miccosukee Indian Tribes. and Seminoles.
The FEMA Department becomes authorized to identify, mobilize and provide, at its discretion, the equipment and resources necessary toto alleviate the impacts of the emergency. In addition, it was announced that these measures, within the framework of the Public Assistance program, will be financed 75 percent with federal funds.
11:30AM SEPT 25th: We’re starting to see clouds roll in after a mostly sunny morning. There will be a chance for scattered showers & t-storms across South FL starting along the Atlantic Coast early this afternoon. Most activity will be inside later today. #flwx pic.twitter.com/h6cILppPlq
— NWS Miami (@NWSMiami) September 25, 2022
Biden’s trip to Florida on September 27 will be postponed also for this tropical storm, announced the White House.
The Mexican Caribbean coast, which is home to resorts such as Cancun, the Riviera Maya and Tulum, was declared on blue alert (the minimum) this Sunday, to pay attention to Ian’s journey in case his course changes.
For its part, NASA gave up the launch of its new megarocket to the Moon, which was scheduled for Tuesday from the Kennedy Space Center, located halfway between Miami and Jacksonville, on the Atlantic coast of Florida.
The situation in Cuba
The Forecast Center of the Cuban Institute of Meteorology reported that the storm, with sustained winds of 85 kilometers per hour, “turned towards the west-northwest, reducing its movement to about 19 kilometers per hour,” according to an ANSA cable.
This means that it continues to threaten the extreme west of Cuba, where the province of Pinar del Río is located, although the possibility of impacts further east, including Havana, has not been eliminated.
Strong winds and rains are expected as the weather phenomenon approaches.
The Civil Defense of Cuba has already announced preventive protection measures against “the possible passage of Ian.”
These often include moving people who live in “low-lying” areas that are easily flooded.