Hurricane Irma is now the most powerful storm ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean. The Category 5 hurricane is barreling toward Florida with winds in excess of 185 mph. Multiple models show the storm shifting slightly toward the state's east coast, but severe weather is likely across South Florida. A statewide emergency declaration remains in effect Wednesday as communities from the Florida Keys to Marco Island begin evacuations.
Jeff Huffman, meteorologist with the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network, joins Gulf Coast Live to provide an update on the storm, that latest forecast information, and details as the storm continues to move across the the Atlantic.
Providing county-by-county updates on storm preparations are:
- from Lee County, acting emergency management director Lee Mayfield
- from Collier County, Kate Albers with the county's public information office
- from Charlotte County, Dee Hawkins-Garland from the county's Fire and EMS department
Also joining the show is Lt. Greg Bueno with the Florida Highway Patrol, discussing the status of Florida roads and safe measures for those following evacuation orders and recommendations.
We'll also speak with insurance preventatives to discuss how you can prepare for claims you may need to make for your home or rental unit related to the hurricane and other damage.