Irma cuts power to 1 million in Florida, threatens catastrophic flooding
Added 09-10-17 01:10:02pm EST - “Packing 130-mph (210-kph) winds, Hurricane Irma knocked out electricity to more than 1 million Florida homes and businesses on Sunday as it headed towards the state's Gulf Coast, threatening potentially catastrophic flooding.” - Reuters.com
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FORT MYERS/MIAMI (Reuters) - Packing 130-mph (210-kph) winds, Hurricane Irma knocked out electricity to more than 1 million Florida homes and businesses on Sunday as it headed towards the state’s Gulf Coast, threatening potentially catastrophic flooding.
After wreaking havoc in the Caribbean, the deadly storm was located about 80 miles (125 km) south-southeast of Naples on a course for the state’s western coast. Storm surges - water driven ashore by the winds - of up to 15 feet (4.6 m) were possible, according to the National Hurricane Center.
“I am very concerned about the west coast,” Florida Governor Rick Scott told “Fox News Sunday.” The coastline is home to cities like Tampa and St. Petersburg.
Irma, which prompted one of the largest evacuations in U.S. history, is expected to cause billions of dollars in damage to the third-most-populous U.S. state, a major tourism hub with an economy comprising about 5 percent of U.S. gross domestic product.
At least 1.4 million Florida homes and businesses had lost power as the storm pummeled the southern part of the state, according to Florida Power & Light. FPL said it would have to completely rebuild part of its system, which would take weeks not days.
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