Cat. 5 Hurricane Maria Plows Through Leeward Islands, Warnings Issued For Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands
By Space Coast Daily // September 19, 2017
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – National Hurricane Center is continuing to monitor Hurricane Maria as it moves over the Leeward Islands and takes aim for Puerto Rico and Virgin Island tonight.
The category 5 hurricane is currently holding 160 mph max sustained winds and to the west-northwest at 9 mph.
Maria is forecast to move over the northeastern Caribbean Sea today and impact the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico through tonight
The Meteorological Service of St. Lucia has discontinued the Tropical Storm Warning for St. Lucia and discontinued the Tropical Storm Watch for St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
A dangerous storm surge is expected with Hurricane Maria as large and destructive waves will raise water levels by as much as 7 to 11 feet above normal tide levels in the hurricane warning area near the center of Maria as it moves across the Leeward Islands and the British Virgin Islands.
Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands are expected to see a 6 to 9 foot storm surge by tonight.
NHC says The deepest water will occur along the immediate coast near and to the north and east of the landfall location, where the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves.
Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle, and can vary greatly over short distances.
The following islands are expected rainfall totals for Hurricane Maria through Thursday:
• Central and southern Leeward Islands…10 to 15 inches, isolated 20 inches.
• U.S. and British Virgin Islands…10 to 15 inches, isolated 20 inches.
• Puerto Rico…12 to 18 inches, isolated 25 inches.
• Northern Leeward Islands from Barbuda to Anguilla…4 to 8 inches, isolated 10 inches.
• Windward Islands and Barbados…2 to 4 inches, isolated 6 inches.
• Eastern Dominican Republic…4 to 8 inches, isolated 12 inches.
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