Everyone is a bit preoccupied right now tying things down for the most powerful Atlantic hurricane ever observed, so the Outings Committee has canceled this Sunday’s Rivers Alive Cleanup and Paddle Outing on the Alapaha River at Pafford’s Landing. Hurricane Irma may still decide to go east or west, but for a hurricane, better safe than sorry. Depending on the aftermath, we may reschedule for next weekend; stay tuned.
These maps are details from New York Times, UPDATED 12:45 PM ET, SEPT. 8, 2017, Maps: Tracking Hurricane Irma’s Path.
Four days ago Florida governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in all 67 Florida counties, and Monroe County, including Key West, was evacuating.
Irma is currently predicted to drop from category 2 to category 1 around Ocala. Citrus County is already under a partial voluntary evacuation order.
Probably nobody in Cedar Key or the town of Suwannee, Florida needs to be reminded after Matthew what a hurricane storm surge can do, and Irma is going to cause that again no matter which way it goes.
Irma is currently expected to be category 1 through the entire Suwannee River Basin. I don’t think that has ever happened before.
Yesterday, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal declared a state of emergency in 30 counties, including Echols, Clinch, Ware, Atkinson, and Coffee , and a mandatory evacuation of everything east of I-95, including Savannah and all of Chatham County. Today he added 64 more counties, including all the rest of the Suwannee River Basin in Georgia, for a total of 94 counties. Fort Stewart is evacuating.
Thsi table is from the National Hurricane Center.
|Types of Damage Due to Hurricane Winds
|Very dangerous winds will produce some damage: Well-constructed frame homes could have damage to roof, shingles, vinyl siding and gutters. Large branches of trees will snap and shallowly rooted trees may be toppled. Extensive damage to power lines and poles likely will result in power outages that could last a few to several days.
|Extremely dangerous winds will cause extensive damage: Well-constructed frame homes could sustain major roof and siding damage. Many shallowly rooted trees will be snapped or uprooted and block numerous roads. Near-total power loss is expected with outages that could last from several days to weeks.
|Devastating damage will occur: Well-built framed homes may incur major damage or removal of roof decking and gable ends. Many trees will be snapped or uprooted, blocking numerous roads. Electricity and water will be unavailable for several days to weeks after the storm passes.
|Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.
|157 mph or higher
137 kt or higher
252 km/h or higher
|Catastrophic damage will occur: A high percentage of framed homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.
-jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®
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This Hurricane Irma path goes directly over my house, after Hurricane Hermine already did that a year ago. Irma is much stronger. Valdosta and Lowndes County have declared a local state of emergency. Probably other cities and counties have done the same; this post is just an outing cancellation, not an exhaustive survey.