As Hurricane Irma approaches landfall in the United States, millions of Floridians are being encourage to evacuate and do so quickly.
Irma, which is project to be a Category 4 storm come landfall, is projected to first hit the southwestern part of the state and work its way north in the latest model by the National Hurricane Center. See the latest track, as of 11 a.m. on September 9, in the model below:
Much of Florida’s Panhandle is in the affected area, but Pensacola appears out of the cone. That doesn’t mean the city is completely out of the storm, however. Pensacola should still feel some of the strong winds from Irma beginning sometime around Monday morning. According to the Pensacola News Journal, northwestern Florida could see higher wind speeds along the coast Monday.
“I believe Pensacola is probably just out of the range of where we see a small chance of rain,” National Weather Service meteorologist Ryan Rogers told the newspaper. “In Okaloosa County down through Destin and Niceville, we do have a small chance of precipitation, but certainly not flooding at this point.”
Because of the dangerous storm, around 6.3 million residents in Florida have been ordered to evacuate, the Florida Department of Emergency Management said. Many of those evacuees have traveled to Pensacola to flee the path of Irma. The city has opened up numerous shelters for those seeking refuge.
On Saturday morning, Be Ready Alliance Coordinating for Emergencies Director of Operations Chuck Palocy told the News Journal there were 43 people at the Pensacola Bay Center.
“We’re trying to stay fluid and provide safe places for people to come. We’re expecting 50-100 more people to show up in the next couple of days,” Palocy said.
Here’s the latest weather forecast for Pensacola, according to AccuWeather:
Saturday night: Clear to partly cloudy with a low of 68 degrees. Winds from the NE at 7 mph and gusts at 9 mph.
Sunday: Sun followed by increasing clouds with a high of 79 degrees. Winds from the NNE at 9 mph and gusts reaching 15 mph.
Sunday night: Mostly cloudy with a low of 65 degrees. Winds from the NNE at 7 mph and gusts reaching 16 mph.
Monday: Some wind and rain from Irma with a high of 80 degrees. Winds from the NNW at 29 mph and gusts at 72 mph.
Monday night: Partly cloudy and cool with the low temperature approaching a record low temperature of 60 degrees. Winds from the NW at 6 mph and gusts reaching 37 mph.
For the latest updates on Irma, click here.