Ian becomes major Cat. 3 hurricane, Tropical Storm Watch for inland Miami-Dade, Broward
MIAMI – Hurricane Ian strengthened into a major hurricane early Tuesday morning and made landfall over western Cuba.
According to the National Hurricane Center’s 5 a.m. advisory, Ian made landfall just southwest of the town of La Coloma in the Pinar Del Rio Province of Cuba around 4:30 a.m.
Ian had sustained winds of 125 mph as it moved to the north at 12 mph.
NEXT Weather Chief Meteorologist and Hurricane Specialist Ivan Cabrera said Monday that the storm’s winds and speed are expected to strengthen as it moves into the very warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
“Well see those numbers go up with each passing advisory,” he said, adding that South Florida is already seeing heavy rain from the storm’s outer bands.
Heavy rain bands with gusty squalls arrived in the lower Keys on Monday night and will continue spreading north across all of South Florida, including Miami-Dade and Broward, throughout Tuesday and Wednesday.
The Florida Keys could see 4 to 6 inches of rain, Coastal Southwest and Southeast Florida could see: 4 to 6 inches with some areas seeing up to 10 inches. Central West Florida could get 6 to 12 inches, with some areas seeing up to 20 inches, and the remainder of the Florida Peninsula could get 4 to 8 inches.
A few tornadoes are possible today across the Florida Keys and the southern and central Florida Peninsula.
The combination of storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline.
If the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide, the Florida Keys including the Dry Tortugas could see a surge of 2 to 4 feet, Anclote River to Middle of Longboat Key, including Tampa could see 5-10 feet, the Suwannee River to Anclote River could see 5 to 8 feet, middle of Longboat Key to Englewood could see 5 to 8 feet, and Englewood to Bonita Beach, including Charlotte Harbor could see 4 to 7 feet.
Ian will emerge over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday, pass west of the Florida Keys during the day, and approach the west coast of Florida on Wednesday into Thursday.
It is forecast to be a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 mph as it passes to our west moving north. It then curves northeast towards the Gulf Coast on Wednesday afternoon. Landfall will be sometime Thursday as it slows down.
A Hurricane Warning is in effect for the Cuban provinces of Isla de Juventud, Pinar del Rio, and Artemisa, Bonita Beach to the Anclote River, including Tampa Bay, and Dry Tortugas.
A Hurricane Watch is in effect north of Anclote River to the Suwannee River.
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the Cuban provinces of La Habana, Mayabeque, and Matanzas, the lower Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge westward to Key West, Flamingo to Bonita Beach, Suwannee River to the Anclote River, Volusia/Brevard County Line south to Jupiter Inlet, and Lake Okeechobee.
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for inland Miami-Dade including Homestead, Kendall Lakes, Country Walk, Redlands and Everglades National Park, inland Broward including the Miccosukee Indian Reservation, north of the Suwannee River to Indian Pass, Altamaha Sound to Volusia/Brevard County line, and Deerfield Beach to Jupiter Inlet.
A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for the Anclote River southward to Flamingo and Tampa Bay.
A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for the Florida Keys from the Card Sound Bridge westward to Key West, Dry Tortugas, Florida Bay, Aucilla River to Anclote River, Altamaha Sound to Flagler/Volusia County Line, and the Saint Johns River.