Irma to restrengthen tonight, significant surge expected in SW FL

This is an article written by Meteorologist Zack Fradella as of 11 AM ET:

Hurricane Irma remains along the northern coast of Cuba on this Saturday morning and has continued to slowly weaken due to the interaction with land.

The latest advisory from the National Hurricane Center at 11 AM ET has weakened Irma down to a Category 3 hurricane with winds of 125 mph but the movement has slowed quite a bit down to 9 mph. This is likely indicative that the turn towards the north is beginning and will likely play out throughout the day today.

Although the storm has weakened, once Irma moves off the coast of Cuba and into the Florida Straits, restrengthening is expected. In fact, the National Hurricane Center does forecast Irma to regain Category 4 strength before moving over the Keys early Sunday. Some of the warmest water in all of the Atlantic Basin is ahead of this storm which is certainly not good news for the Florida coastline.

Water inundation is expected to be between 10-15 feet along portions of the SW Florida Coast with as much as 5-8 feet of surge expected into Tampa Bay. Residents are urged to complete their preparations as conditions will continue to go downhill through the day today and especially tonight.

Mark Sudduth spent most of last night in the Keys placing pods that gives you the capability at home to track the data yourself on the HurricaneTrack app. His plan is to go to SW Florida today to put out more instruments.

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About Mark Sudduth

Greetings! I am Mark Sudduth, the founder and editor of HurricaneTrack.com. The site began in 1999 as a way to post info concerning tropical storms and hurricanes for any interested visitors. Little did I know how big it would become in the years since. Now, we have millions of visitors from all over the world who have come to rely on the site as a no non-sense, tell it like it is resource for all things hurricane related. We are supported by a combination of corporate sponsors and our loyal Client Services members who subscribe to premium content on our sister site, premium.hurricanetrack.com. I am married with six energetic and intelligent children and live in southeast North Carolina. I graduated UNC-Wilmington in 1995 with a BA in Geography and have studied the effects of hurricanes on our society ever since.
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