DCR Weather: Hurricane Ian makes landfall in Cuba as Category 3 storm; Florida on alert.🌀☕☕☕

Ayyyeee… What’s Goodie Everyone. So I got the tea on the weather and it’s looks like another hurricane is here.

Hurricane Ian made landfall over the western portion of Cuba early Tuesday morning as a Category 3 storm, bringing with it “significant wind and storm surge impacts” as it continued to make its way toward Florida, according to forecasters.

Ian is expected to strengthenas it emerges southeast of the Gulf of Mexico in the late morning, the National Hurricane Center said in its most recent advisory. It is expected to move west of the Florida Keys later Tuesday and head for the west coast of Florida as a major hurricane by Wednesday night.

The storm intensified to a Category 3 hurricane, with maximum winds estimated at more than 115 mph at its core before it made landfall near La Coloma in the Pinar Del Rio Province of Cuba. The National Hurricane Center warned that life threatening storm surges, hurricane force winds, flash floods and mudslides were expected in western Cuba overnight and into Tuesday, urging residents to move quickly to evacuate and protect property. At 8 a.m. Tuesday, Ian had gained even more intensity, with 125 mph maximum sustained winds as it moved north at 12 mph, about 130 miles southwest of Dry Tortugas National Park near the Florida Keys.

Residents of coastal communities around the Tampa Bay region have been ordered to evacuate and urged to go even short distances to avoid the worst of the storm.

Ian is forecasted to bring severe flooding and damaging winds to Florida’s Gulf Coast, appearing bound for landfall somewhere between Naples and the west coast’s Big Bend area between Wednesday and Thursday. It is forecast to become a Category 4 storm with 140 mph winds by late Tuesday, which would make it the strongest September hurricane in the gulf since Rita in 2005. The storm is then expected to weaken slightly as it approaches Florida, striking land as a Category 3 with maximum sustained winds of 125 miles per hour.

Hurricane warnings were issued across the Tampa Bay region Monday evening, along with storm surge warnings.

Credit: Google.com, The Washington Post, National Weather Service.

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