Hurricane Irma shifts direction as it closes in on Florida

The Economic Cost of Harvey and Irma $290 Billion

Hurricane Irma shifts direction as it closes in on Florida

Tropical Storm Irma was located about 70 miles east of Tallahassee.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami is predicting that Jose, with 120-mph winds Sunday night, will do a loop in the Atlantic Ocean over the next few days. The next high tide is just after noon Monday.

"Unlike storms or certainly hurricanes of the past, this hurricane is so widespread that it will be very unlikely that we will see the same concentration in smaller areas of damage as we have seen the past", Deal said.

The National Hurricane Center reports that a the storm is expected to move near or over Florida's west coast later today through tonight, farther westward than had previously been predicted. The situation is a particular headache for American Airlines, the country's largest air carrier, which uses Miami as a major hub.

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As Irma weakened to a tropical storm Monday morning it continued to move over Florida toward Georgia.

Speaking Monday morning on MSNBC's "Morning Joe", Buckhorn said "What we thought was going to be a punch in the face was a glancing blow".

The challenges in the immediate aftermath of the storm will be many: Restoring across the state, removing debris from roads, dealing with possible fuel shortages, and making sure nursing home and hospital patients who were evacuated can safely return. A tropical storm warning means tropical storm winds are expected within the area within the next 36 hours. So power outages are still possible in SC. There are the possibilities of tornadoes. Jasper and Beaufort counties until 2pm.

Irma's heavy rain threatened flash flooding and rapid rises on creeks, streams and rivers.

Irma floods Jacksonville as storm heads north
Although the circulation of Irma will move over Alabama, the tornado risk is on the lower side, according to the weather service. The centre of Hurricane Irma has hit mainland Florida , just south of Naples, amid warnings of storm surges as high as 4.5m.

On Friday, the utility warned Irma could impact around 4.1 million customers, but that was before the storm track shifted away from the eastern side of the state where FPL's customers are concentrated in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties. An evacuation order is also in effect for the Georgia coast, while Alabama, North Carolina and SC have all declared states of emergency.

Flooding is possible through the day Monday and into Tuesday, depending on rainfall.

Winds up to 45 miles per hour could create such a scenario based on general guidelines, but that's a call that public safety personnel would make based on weather conditions at that time, Hawkins said.

In fact, 40% of all United States hurricanes strike Florida, NOAA says. Tampa Electric reported more than 300,000 accounts had been knocked offline.

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