Hurricane Irma. How we’re dealing and what we’re learning from an Atlantic monster.
Irma, moving on north today. Leaving records in her wake. The highest, longest wind speeds of any hurricane on record on Earth. More “accumulated cyclone energy,” experts call it, than any storm ever before. Caribbean islands, devastated. Miami, spared the worst. Florida’s west coast, in the water. And six million evacuees now start to turn home. This hour, On Point: What we saw, what we feared, what we got. And what we’ve learned from Irma. — Tom Ashbrook
Stephen Flynn, founding director of the Global Resilience Institute, professor of political science at Northeastern University and retired Coast Guard commander
Benjamin Kirtman, professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Miami
From Tom’s Reading List
Miami Herald: ‘Unprecedented’ evacuations set as Irma takes direct aim at South Florida — “Irma is set to hit the Florida peninsula directly, though exactly where continues to be uncertain. Increasingly grim-faced emergency managers across the state did not hesitate. Evacuations extended from the Florida Keys to Palm Beach and beyond, as counties along Florida’s east coast eyed the storm’s projected path north. Even Georgia required its coastal residents to leave.”
New York Times: Caribbean devastated as Irma heads toward Florida — “One of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes ever recorded crescendoed over the Caribbean on Thursday, crumpling islands better known as beach paradises into half-habitable emergency zones and sideswiping Puerto Rico before churning north. More than 60 percent of households in Puerto Rico were without power. On St. Martin, an official said 95 percent of the island was destroyed. The Haitian government called for all agencies, stores and banks to shut down as the storm hit. Prime Minister Gaston Browne of Antigua and Barbuda said that half of Barbuda had been left homeless.”
USA Today: Hurricane Irma’s track through center of Florida is unusual — “Like a giant buzzsaw, Hurricane Irma is forecast to carve a ferocious path up the Florida peninsula, all the way from the Keys to the Georgia border. The National Hurricane Center’s forecast path for Irma has it hitting South Florida, including Miami and perhaps its highly developed and expensive central region, then up through affluent Broward and Palm Beach counties and farther north, threatening the entire peninsula.”