MIAMI, FLORIDA (WJHL) – Dramatic new video of Hurricane Irma shows it as it begins to pummel Florida early Sunday morning.
Hurricane force winds, torrential rain, and tornadic storms pounded the coast as the outer bands of Irma passed over land. Millions have evacuated, but many remain in the storms path.
Already, more than 200,000 homes and businesses in the region have lost power, including a high school in Key West being used as a shelter.
“I’ve seen a lot of people that were in line crying wishing they would have left. I’ve asked a lot of them why didn’t you leave and they said I didn’t think it was going to be bad that bad,” said Sheriff Rick Ramsay of Monroe County.
Irma is expected to rip through the Florida Keys as a Category 4 storm Sunday, before unleashing life threatening winds and deadly storm surge, particularly along the West coast.
“Do not think the storm is over when the wind slows down. The storm surge will rush in, and it could kill you,” said Florida Governor Rick Scott.
Even though Irma has shifted west, in Miami forecasters say the city could still see storm surge of 4 to 6 feet. Amid the uncertainty, Florida residents flocked have been flocking to evacuation centers.
“We’re stupid. We should have come to the shelter a day or two ago,” said evacuee Trudy Horner.
Donnell Rogers-Junior, his daughter Gina and their family pet are hunkered down in this St. Petersburg school.
“I hope it goes by pretty fast so we can get home fast,” he said.
Irma’s new projected path is putting St. Petersburg on track for a direct hit.
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