Cooper declares state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Irma

Shawn Sullivan Airbnb’s public policy lead for Central America and the Caribbean
Shawn Sullivan Airbnb’s public policy lead for Central America and the Caribbean
Author

10 September, 2017

But the storm was expected to strengthen as it moved away from Cuba and toward the Florida Keys, where it was expected to hit Sunday morning.

Roy Cooper has declared a state of emergency in preparation for Hurricane Irma, which is predicted to reach the state as early as Monday or Tuesday. A hurricane watch was also issued for the SC coast from the Georgia line to Edisto Beach, about 40 miles (65 kilometers) southwest of Charleston.

"This is a tremendous storm", Hooks said.

The most recent briefing on Hurricane Irma was published by the National Weather Service at 5 p.m. Thursday and describes moderate-to-high confidence in impact for the central part of the state.

"This is a deadly storm and our state has never seen anything like it", Scott said.

Governor Cooper says the state is shifting emergency management staff to the western areas of North Carolina due to the projected path of Irma. But the latest track of the storm shows it moving westward, which could lessen the impact Irma would have on WNC.

In its 11 a.m. advisory for Hurricane Jose, the National Weather Service announced Jose has grown from a Category 3 hurricane to a Category 4. It should slowly weaken as it interacts with land.

On the coast, Cooper said, there have been unsafe rip currents.

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"The key at this point is to remain vigilant and follow the news", she said.

Climatologists have always been predicting more active storm seasons due to climate change, and we have seen those forecasts come true.

Manheimer said she will consider whether to declare a state of emergency over the weekend.

City of Asheville spokesperson Polly McDaniel said for the now the town is monitoring the storm forecast and putting crews on alter that they could be called in to assist with rescue and recovery.

Earlier today, it seemed we would be spared (except, perhaps, the far western tip of the state) and, while the latest track also suggests we may be largely spared, the new model trajectories offer widely divergent possibilities for our state.

The region's universities, which have substantial numbers of students and faculty commuting along narrow mountain roads that susceptible to landslides and through valleys that could be threatened by flooding, are also keeping an eye on the system.

Irma made landfall in the Caribbean on Wednesday, causing significant damage on several islands and leaving half of Puerto Rico without power. "Know your evacuation route and make a hurricane kit".


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