UPDATE: Hurricane Irma Moving Away but Still Impacting Cuba, with Tidal Waves, Severe Coastal Floodings
Havana 10 sep (RHC) -- Hurricane Irma continues to batter Cuba's western region with tropical storm force winds and hurricane force winds in areas of the northern coast, from Matanzas to Havana. Heavy tidal waves and severe coastal flooding continue along the western north coast, including the Malecon, the Havana seaside drive. The Cuban western and central regions continue to be under strong and locally intense rains.
At three in the morning the center of the intense Hurricane Irma was located about 70 kilometers north of Punta Hicacos, Matanzas and 130 kilometers northeast of Havana. The Cuban Meteorology Institute said in its last advisory that the hurricane had tilted its trajectory to the northwest, moving at a speed of 13 kilometers per hour. It said Irma has returned to a category four hurricane, and could continue to gain force in the water south of Florida.
Severe coastal flooding remain on the western north coast from Matanzas to Artemisa, with waves between 6 and 9 meters high, which will persist today. On the north coast of the provinces of Sancti Spíritus and Villa Clara, waves are reported between 5 and 7 meters high, with coastal flooding remaining. Due to the persistence of strong southwestern winds, moderate to strong coastal floods are expected to continue on the southern coast, from Camagüey to Matanzas.
Although Irma moves on a course northwest of the Strait of Florida, tropical storm force winds will continue from Sancti Spíritus to Artemisa. In northern areas of the provinces from Villa Clara to Havana gusty winds between 120 and 130 kilometers per hour are expected to continue.
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