Irma struck the USA mainland today (Sept. 10), making landfall in Florida at 9:10 a.m. local time as a Category 4 hurricane, and experts predict that Irma will remain a hurricane though the morning of September 11 and perhaps longer.
MARTIN: Can you tell us a little bit more about where Irma is believed to be heading next?
In Irma's case, traveling along the west coast, Southeast Florida gets the storm's "strong side", DeMaria said.
"The greatest impacts from Irma will be felt with winds increasing to 40 to 50 miles per hour with gusts near 70 miles per hour along and east of the center of the storm track by early this afternoon".
President Donald Trump received a "comprehensive update" Sunday on Hurricane Irma after the storm hit the Florida Keys, the White House said, and Vice President Mike Pence urged those in the storm's path to "heed the warnings" of local officials.
Florida Governor Rick Scott told CNN, "My heart goes out to the people in the Keys", and he's not sure at this time how evacuations will commence.
Cranes Snap in Fla. Due to Irma Winds
With winds from Hurricane Irma too strong for paramedics to respond, a woman had to deliver her own baby in Miami Sunday morning. Officials urged people in buildings facing the crane to seek shelter on the opposite side of the building or in a stairwell.
Flash flood emergency: The National Weather Service issued a flash flood emergency for parts of downtown.
The eyewall of the hurricane was over Naples, on the west coast of Florida at 8am (New Zealand time). "But we do know that in the eastern portions of our state, they need to start preparing themselves for tropical storm conditions". And then we'll see how bad the storm surge is there.
Storm surge is forecast to be as high as 10 to 15 feet above normal tide levels from Cape Sable to Captiva in southwest Florida, with life-threatening inundation expected all along Florida's western Gulf coast.
Footage from the Grassy Key island shot by United States broadcaster NBC showed downed power lines, felled trees, and streets strewn with debris and vehicles.
DeMaria said the National Hurricane Center on the west campus of Florida International University, has received several gusts close to or over 100 miles per hour.
According to the Miami Herald report and the Miami-Dade police, Cara Kesling gave birth to a little girl named Nayiri Storm. Meanwhile, heavy equipment crews have begun clearing away road and other debris in Florida as cleanup crews fan out with chain saws to remove downed trees and begin taking stock of the extent of the damage.
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