As of Thursday morning, Irma is still a Category 5 hurricane with winds of about 180 mph. Irma is one of three active hurricanes in the Atlantic right now.
Where is it?
— Irma is off the northern coast of the Dominican Republic
— The center of the storm will pass north of Hispaniola later Thursday
— Irma will be near the Turks and Caicos Islands and the southeastern Bahamas by Thursday evening. The Bahamas ordered evacuations for six of its southern islands:
- Crooked Island
- Long Cay
- Ragged Island
Destruction so far
— Irma ravaged Barbuda, St. Martin and the British Virgin Islands
— 10 deaths have been confirmed: Six on St. Martin, two on St. Barthélemy, one on Barbuda and one on Anguilla
— Barbuda’s Prime Minister says the island is barely inhabitable — 95% of its buildings are damaged
— Puerto Rico was not directly impacted, but strong winds and torrential rains left hundreds of thousands without power and more than 56,000 without water
Will Irma hit Florida?
— We still don’t know how Irma will impact the mainland US, but models show it could be near Florida’s east coast by late Sunday. Florida is under a state of emergency.
— Officials have already ordered some evacuations. So far, evacuation zones include:
- Monroe County
- Palm Beach
— North Carolina and South Carolina are also preparing. Both are under states of emergency.
— Irma has maintained wind intensity above 180 mph longer than any storm in Atlantic basin history
**Keep it right here for the latest coverage on Hurricane Irma; read more stories HERE**