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Hurricane Irma Has Devastated The Caribbean And Is Heading Straight For Florida

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It’s been a week since Hurricane Harvey made landfall and began pummeling southeastern Texas. Now, Hurricane Irma has devastated the Caribbean islands and it making a beeline for Florida. The Category 5 storm has claimed at least 12 lives so far. As the storm heads west, evacuations have been put into effect in south Florida to move residents further north, away from the path of devastation. Here’s what’s happened so far.

Hurricane Irma has cut a path of devastation through the Caribbean killing 12 people so far.

Irma has destroyed more than 90 percent of homes in the Caribbean country of Barbuda. Businesses, banks, public institutions, schools, and emergency services have been shut down on the various islands impacted by the storm and residents were urged to take shelter.

Puerto Rico survived the storm as Hurricane Irma narrowly missed hitting the island head on. Still, power failures plague the island nation.

According to the Miami Herald, Puerto Rico, which has been suffering serious financial problems, could be without power in some areas for up to six months. The notice by public officials went out before the storm grazed the northern part of Puerto Rico. The New York Times reports that 70 percent of Puerto Rico was without power early Thursday.

Rescue and relief efforts are already underway for the islands that have been hit.

Dutch, French, British, and American personnel have been dispatched to the Caribbean islands that have been hit by the storm. Many of the Caribbean islands are territories of foreign countries, meaning that the aforementioned governments will be important players in all recovery efforts. At its peak, Hurricane Irma was delivering 185 mph winds which leveled buildings and decimated entire communities.

As the storm makes its way through the Dominican Republic and Haiti, the Bahamas, Cuba, and Florida are bracing for impact.

The storm is expected to hit the southern tip of the Bahamas and the north coast of Cuba, including the capitol city Havana. Evacuation orders have been put into effect for residents and tourists of the Florida Keys.

Survivors on the islands are sharing videos and photos of the destruction as a warning for those who are in the path of Hurricane Irma.

Florida Governor Rick Scott has suspended all tolls on Florida roadways to allow for residents to evacuate from the storm.

Florida has also partnered with Google Maps to show real-time street closures as the storm impacts the state.

Yet, for the Caribbean islands already devastated by Hurricane Irma, there is no break from wind and rain as Hurricane Jose strengthens into a Category 3 storm. It is expected to follow Hurricane Irma’s path.

Stay safe. Evacuate if officials say so. Click here to get updates on the different hurricanes currently active.


READ: Here’s The Latest On Hurricane Harvey And How Texas Is Dealing With The Damage

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A Major Earthquake Has Devastated Parts Of Southern Mexico

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A Major Earthquake Has Devastated Parts Of Southern Mexico

@AlertaChiapas / Twitter

An 8.1 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of southern Mexico near Chiapas late last night. The earthquake was shallow (only 43 miles deep) and strong enough that it was felt as far away as Mexico City, which is 600 miles away from the epicenter, according to CNN. At least 32 people have been killed in Mexico. According to the Associated Press, there is an unconfirmed report of one person dead in neighboring Guatemala.

Buildings shook for almost a full minute after a magnitude 8.1 earthquake struck off the coast of southern Mexico near Chiapas.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto has called the earthquake the strongest Mexico has experienced in 100 years. According to CNN, 32 people have died so far, with 23 deaths in Oaxaca, seven deaths in Chiapas, and two deaths reported in Tabasco.

People have shared videos of the earthquake on social media that show buildings crumbling as they shake.

According to LA Times, two women in Chiapas died after a home collapsed and one child in Tabasco died after a wall fell.

There are reports that some hospitals in the affected area are still without power and first responders are searching for survivors.

“Please, we urgently need as much help as you can send,” Pamela Terán, a city councilor in Juchitán, Oaxaca, said in a video, according to The New York Times. “We need hands and manpower to try and dig out the people that we know are buried under the rubble.”

Mexico City, 600 miles north of the epicenter of the earthquake, felt the force.

Schools in Mexico City and 10 Mexican states impacted by the earthquake have been closed for the day as the country assesses all the damage caused by the earthquake, according to The New York Times.

The skies over Mexico City flashed with lights during the earthquake.

There is some debate about what caused the lights, which is a phenomenon that has been reported during previous earthquakes, according to Forbes.

Forbes reports that there are two theories that can explain the lights. One is that the lights are a release of energy from the ground during seismic activity that is similar to lightning. The second is electrical power sources exploding due to the shaking and movement brought on by the earthquake.

The United States Geological Survey has reported around 20 aftershocks following the earthquake.

https://twitter.com/2peru2000/status/906033038684864515

According to LA Times, Peña Nieto has warned that a 7.2 magnitude aftershock is likely.

Mexican authorities and first responders are still assessing the damage and looking through rubble for more survivors.


READ: Death Toll Jumps To 413 After Ecuador Earthquake, But Rescuers Continue Finding Survivors

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