Hurricane Maria heading to Irma-hit Caribbean islands

Tuesday, 19 Sep, 2017

The worst conditions will be felt in eastern Long Island and eastern MA on Wednesday, when those areas may get battered by the combination of heavy rain, damaging wind gusts and coastal flooding. Irma killed four people on the United States side of the islands, and another four on the British.

Maria was then moving northwest at about 10 miles per hour, but forecasters expect the storm to slow down through Tuesday.

Shortly after, he announced that "I have been rescued".

President Donald Trump approved an emergency declaration for the island and ordered Federal Emergency Management Agency to assist the commonwealth.

The bad news is that Maria is likely to be a major hurricane - defined by the National Weather Service as Category 3 or above - by the time it spins into territorial waters.

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello said starting midday Tuesday, conditions will begin to deteriorate and the island could get between 12 and 18 inches of rain.

Officials from French-controlled Martinique to the US Virgin Islands warned residents to prepare for the storm, now ranked by US forecasters as a major hurricane, at category three on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

This storm is rapidly intensifying which is a troubling scenario for the islands it will sweep across.

Hurricane watches have been issued for the USA and British Virgin Islands as well as for Puerto Rico.

A fresh hurricane warning has been put in place for British overseas territories and parts of the Caribbean this week, just days after Irma unleashed devastation on the region. As Prime Minister Harris stated on national radio September 6 during his initial observations following the passage of Hurricane Irma, the public's cooperation is essential and greatly appreciated by the St. Kitts-Nevis authorities.

It has recently been upgraded to a category 3 as it heads towards the Leeward Islands, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

Irma left around 40 people dead in the Caribbean before churning east and pounding Florida, where at least 20 people were killed. "I don't think anybody's ever been hit by a storm like that". The storm was predicted to bring 10 to 15 inches (25 to 38 centimeters) of rain for some islands, with the possibility of higher amounts in isolated spots.

The storm's maximum sustained winds have reached near 120 miles per hour, with gusts at higher speeds. Those numbers are all slightly above average for a typical season, which is only about half over for 2017.