HURRICANE IRMA UPDATE #4 - 12 noon, Sunday, September 10th
Douglas County Communications & Community Relations and Douglas County Emergency Management
Here is the latest information about Hurricane Irma we received from the National Weather Service at its 12 noon briefing for emergency management teams across the State.
- The size of Irma’s hurricane wind field extends 100 miles wide (130 - 156 mph winds). The tropical storm wind field is 360 miles wide (39 - 73 mph winds).
This is a HUGE storm.
- The forecast track of Irma:
o Irma made its first landfall this morning on the Florida Keys, and is predicted to come up the west coast of Florida with possible second landfall around Naples. The longer that Irma stays over water, and therefore the farther north it makes landfall on west Florida, the stronger Irma becomes.
o Once Irma comes into Georgia, it is predicted to start bending northwestward, and is predicted to follow a track from Albany to Americus to Auburn to Birmingham. Irma most likely will be a tropical storm by the time it gets to Albany (73 mph winds).
o The eye of the storm is now predicted to go farther south from Douglas County than forecast last night. Regardless, we will experience high winds, rain, and possibly tornadoes.
- All of the State will most probably experience tropical force winds (minimum 39 mph).
- South Georgia will start to feel the impacts of the storm Sunday evening.
- Douglas County should start feeling the winds Monday morning.
o On Monday, the maximum wind gusts should be 45 - 55 mph, and will be inside the bands of rain surrounding the hurricane. The earliest wind gusts should be in north Georgia about 8 a.m. The most likely arrival time of tropical force winds should be mid-afternoon Monday. Sustained winds could be about 40 mph. This is earlier than previously predicted.
o On Monday night, the rain should increase and wind gusts will be about 55 - 65 mph. Sustained winds could be about 40 mph.
o THE MAJOR ATTACK OF THIS STORM IN DOUGLAS COUNTY SHOULD BE LATE MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH TUESDAY MORNING.
o On Tuesday morning, we can expect more rain and wind gusts of 30 - 40 mph as the storm moves out, decreasing over time.
o The storm should exit our area some time on Tuesday afternoon.
- Douglas County can expect 3 - 5 inches of rain, although some of the rain bands may produce heavier amounts. Rainfall totals are expected to be much higher to the east of us. It is not expected that the storm will contain thunderstorms – rather bands of heavy rain with high winds.
- Douglas County is under a Flash Flood Watch from 8 a.m. Monday - 8 a.m. Tuesday due to the anticipated heavy rains.
- There is a risk of tornadoes developing with this storm.
- The biggest impacts from Irma in Douglas County most likely will be widespread downed trees & powerlines, high winds, and the possibilities of tornadoes.
- THE DOUGLAS COUNTY SCHOOL SYSTEM WILL BE CLOSED MONDAY - TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11TH- 12TH FOR ALL STUDENTS AND STAFF, INCLUDING 240-DAY EMPLOYEES.
- Carroll County and Paulding County Schools will also be closed as will the University of West Georgia
- The Woodie Fite Senior Center will be closed Monday and Tuesday.
- Douglas County Rideshare has canceled its vanpool program for Monday and Tuesday.
- Douglas County Parks and Recreation has canceled all outdoor activities for Monday and Tuesday.
The confidence in the forecast is increasing as Irma gets closer to the Florida Keys. The National Weather Service will update emergency managers again at 8:30 p.m. Sunday. Updates will be posted, as appropriate, on the County web site at www.CelebrateDouglasCounty.com and on Douglas County Happenings on Facebook.
www.DouglasCountyEmergency.com is now active to centralize storm data and local information in one place.
As always, forecasts are subject to change, but regardless, this storm has a lot of damage potential.
Senator David Perdue Statement On
Hurricane Irma Preparation Efforts In Georgia
ATLANTA, GA – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA) comments on the ongoing Hurricane Irma preparation efforts in Georgia:
“I join all Georgians in applauding the ongoing efforts of our first responders, state and local government officials, and emergency volunteers. Across the state, we have seen Georgians come together and help others as we brace for this dangerous storm. Currently, folks across the state have turned their churches, schools, and community centers into shelters to assist not only Georgians, but also Floridians. Thank you to everyone who is lending a helping hand. We must continue to take precautions seriously. My team stands ready to help, but the most important thing right now is to continue to heed these warnings and prepare accordingly.”
Georgia Hurricane Resources:
- View up-to-date emergency declarations from Governor Deal here.
- View a list of Georgia shelter locations here or call 1-800-TRY-GEMA.
- Download FEMA’s app with emergency information by county here.
- Download GEMHSA’s Ready Georgia mobile with the “I’m safe” alert feature here.
- Follow Georgia 511 for real-time traffic 24/7.
- Self-report basic damage information on homes, businesses, and public facilities with GEMHSA here.
- Apply for FEMA assistance or register your sustained damage here.
- List you and your family as safe with the Red Cross here.
- Red Cross disaster assistance: 1-877-500-8645.
- See safety tips from the Georgia Emergency Management & Homeland Security Agency here.