On the forecast track, the eye of Irma should move near or over the west coast of the Florida Peninsula through Monday morning. Irma should then move inland over northern Florida and southwestern Georgia on Monday afternoon.

7 PM UPDATE

Hurricane Irma, now a Category 2 storm, was maintaining 105 mph sustained winds as its eyewall was moving north near Fort Myers in the 7 p.m. report from the National Hurricane Center.

Located approximately 15 miles east-northeast of Fort Myers when the report was issued, Irma continued to travel north at 14 mph with a night hit on Tampa just hours away.

The minimum central pressure had elevated slightly again, now standing at 942 millibars (27.82 inches).

While Irma continued to trend more east by the time it gets near the Panhandle, the size of the massive storm kept a Tropical Storm Warning in effect from west of Indian Pass in Gulf County to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line and a Hurricane Warning in effect up the Gulf Coast to Indian Pass.

As night was falling, dangerous storm surges were expected in areas of onshore winds along the Gulf Coast.


Storm Surge Warning

* South Santee River southward to Jupiter Inlet

* North Miami Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to the Ochlockonee River

* Florida Keys

* Tampa Bay

Other watches and warnings overnight are:

Hurricane Warning

* Fernandina Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to Indian Pass

* Florida Keys

* Lake Okeechobee

* Florida Bay

Hurricane Watch

* North of Fernandina Beach to Edisto Beach

Tropical Storm Warning

* West of Indian Pass to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line

* North of Fernandina Beach to South Santee River

On the forecast track, the eye of Irma should move near or over the west coast of the Florida Peninsula through Monday morning.  Irma should then move inland over northern Florida and southwestern Georgia on Monday afternoon.

Following are updated rainfall totals from the Hurricane Center:

The Florida Keys: Additional 3 to 6 inches with storm total amounts from 15 to 20 inches, isolated 25 inches.

Western Florida peninsula: 10 to 15 inches, isolated 20 inches.

Eastern Florida peninsula and southeast Georgia: 8 to 12 inches, isolated 16 inches.

The rest of Georgia, the eastern Florida Panhandle, southern and western South Carolina, and western North Carolina: 3 to 8 inches, isolated 12 inches.

Southern Tennessee, northern Mississippi and much of Alabama: 2 to 5 inches.

Tornadoes remain possible through tonight, mainly across central and eastern portions of the Florida Peninsula and extreme southeast Georgia.

6 PM UPDATE

Hurricane Irma, now a strong Category 2 storm, was maintaining 110 mph sustained winds as its eyewall was hammering Fort Myers in the 6 p.m. report from the National Hurricane Center.

Located approximately 15 miles east-northeast of Fort Myers when the report was issued, Irma continued to travel north at a slightly higher speed of 14 mph.

The minimum central pressure had elevated slightly as well, now standing at 940 millibars (27.76 inches).

4 PM UPDATE

While television images of powerful Hurricane Irma pounding South Florida are harrowing, well up the Gulf Coast, Northwest Florida may have just received a break.

According to the 4 p.m. update from the National Hurricane Center, the path of Irma's track north through Florida is taking it inland away from the Emerald Coast by the time it arrives near the Panhandle. Irma made its final landfall at Marco Island at 2:25 p.m. Sunday and has just pounded Naples with Fort Myers, Sarasota, Bradenton, Tampa/St. Petersburg and other west coast points bracing for the storm's eyewall.

The Weather Service stated that the eye of Irma should move near or over the west coast of the Florida Peninsula through Monday morning. Irma should then move inland over northern Florida and southwestern Georgia on Monday afternoon.

Maximum sustained winds are near 110 mph with higher gusts. Although weakening is forecast, Irma is expected to remain a hurricane at least through Monday morning.

While any imminent danger from Irma for Northwest Florida seems to be drifting east, the previous warnings and watches remain in effect.

A Tropical Storm Warning remains in effect west of Indian Pass in Gulf County to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line and a Hurricane Warning is in effect up the Gulf Coast to Indian Pass near Apalachicola.

The National Weather Service wind advisory across our area also remains intact through 7 p.m. Monday.

In the latest Hurricane Center report, hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 220 miles. A mesonet site at Naples Municipal Airport recently reported a sustained wind of 88 mph with a gust to 135 mph while in the northern eyewall of Irma.

The minimum central pressure reported by an Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft is 938 millibars. A pressure of 937 mb was measured by a storm spotter on Marco Island while in Irma's eye.

Following are the current watches and warnings in effect for Florida by the Hurricane Center at 4 p.m.:

Storm Surge Warning

—South Santee River southward to Jupiter Inlet

—North Miami Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to the Ochlockonee River

—Florida Keys

—Tampa Bay

Hurricane Warning

—Fernandina Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to Indian Pass

—Florida Keys

—Lake Okeechobee

—Florida Bay

Hurricane Watch

—North of Fernandina Beach to Edisto Beach

Tropical Storm Warning

—West of Indian Pass to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line

—North of Fernandina Beach to South Santee River

Irma is expected to produce the following rain accumulations through Wednesday:

The Florida Keys: Additional 3 to 6 inches with storm total amounts from 15 to 20 inches, isolated 25 inches.

Western Florida peninsula: 10 to 15 inches, isolated 20 inches.

Eastern Florida peninsula and southeast Georgia: 8 to 12 inches, isolated 16 inches.

The rest of Georgia, the eastern Florida Panhandle, southern and western South Carolina and western North Carolina: 3 to 8 inches, isolated 12 inches.

Southern Tennessee, northern Mississippi and much of Alabama: 2 to 5 inches.

Tornadoes remain possible through tonight, mainly across central and eastern portions of the Florida Peninsula and extreme southeast Georgia.

2:45 PM Update

Hurricane Irma made its second landfall in Florida, the final one at Marco Island at 2:25 p.m. Sunday, according to an advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

The first landfall occurred previously when the monster storm hit the Florida Keys.

In the new Hurricane Center report, Irma hit mainland Florida as a Category 3 storm. Its current maximum wind speed was recorded at 115 mph. The hurricane now is forecast to move north at 12 mph.

The storm's minimum central pressure has risen to 940 millibars (27.76 inches).

UPDATE 1:40 P.M.

A destructive hit on Florida remains forecast, but Hurricane Irma has been downgraded to Category 3 status by the National Hurricane Center.

In its 1 p.m. report, NHC noted that Irma's maximum sustained wind speed had dropped to 120 mph with higher wind gusts. That downgraded the monster storm from Category 4 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.

The minimum central pressure reported by an Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft rose slightly in the new report to 936 millibars (27.64 inches).

It appears landfall will be near the Marco Island/Naples area. At 1 p.m., Irma was moving north at 12 mph just 35 miles from Naples and 70 miles from Fort Myers.

In Northwest Florida, which has seen winds increase notably, a wind advisory was issued at 1 p.m. by the National Weather Service. That advisory remains in effect until 7 p.m. Monday.

Other than that, there has been no change for the area. A Tropical Storm Warning remains in effect west of Indian Pass in Gulf County to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line and a Hurricane Warning is in effect up the Gulf Coast to Indian Pass near Apalachicola.

But, while weakening at this point, Irma is expected to remain a powerful hurricane while it moves near or along the west coast of Florida, the Hurricane Center noted.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 220 miles. A 62 mph sustained wind and 99 mph gust was recently reported at the Federal Aviation Administration station at Miami International Airport.

The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline.  The water is expected to reach the following HEIGHTS ABOVE GROUND if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide:

Cape Sable to Captiva: 10 to 15 feet

Captiva to Ana Maria Island: 6 to 10 feet

Card Sound Bridge through Cape Sable, including the Florida Keys: 5 to 10 feet

Ana Maria Island to Clearwater Beach, including Tampa Bay: 5 to 8 feet

North Miami Beach to Card Sound Bridge, including Biscayne Bay: 3 to 5 feet

South Santee River to Fernandina Beach: 4 to 6 feet

Clearwater Beach to Ochlockonee River: 4 to 6 feet

Fernandina Beach to Jupiter Inlet: 2 to 4 feet

North of North Miami Beach to Jupiter Inlet: 1 to 2 feet

Irma is expected to produce the following rain accumulations through Wednesday:

The Florida Keys: 15 to 20 inches, isolated 25 inches.

Western Florida peninsula: 10 to 15 inches, isolated 20 inches.

Eastern Florida peninsula and southeast Georgia: 8 to 12 inches, isolated 16 inches.

The rest of Georgia, the eastern Florida Panhandle, southern and western South Carolina, and western North Carolina: 3 to 8 inches, isolated 12 inches.

Eastern Alabama and southern Tennessee: 2 to 5 inches.

UPDATE NOON

In an advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center, Category 4 Hurricane Irma had moved to within 50 miles of Naples during its track to the mainland.

Irma continued to maintain sustained winds of 130 mph and was moving north at 9 mph. The storm's minimum central pressure also remained at 933 millibars (27.55 inches).

There were no changes to watches and warnings for Northwest Florida.

A Tropical Storm Warning remains in effect west of Indian Pass in Gulf County to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line and a Hurricane Warning is in effect from Fernandina Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to Indian Pass.

UPDATE 10 A.M.

Hurricane Irma has broke from the Florida Keys and was positioned 80 miles from Naples and 115 miles from Fort Myers in the 10 a.m. report from the National Hurricane Center.

There has been no change to any warnings and watches in Florida from the 7 a.m. update.

A Tropical Storm Warning remains in effect west of Indian Pass in Gulf County to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line and a Hurricane Warning is in effect from Fernandina Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to Indian Pass.

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area in the next 48 hours. This warning indicates a high probability of the area taking on sustained winds between 39 and 73 mph.

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area in the next 48 hours. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

Irma, which remains a Category 4 storm, has taken a direct north path and slightly picked up speed to 9 mph. The minimum central pressure was 933 millibars (27.55 inches).

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 220 miles. A 120 mph gust was recently reported at the National Key Deer Refuge in Big Pine Key. A sustained wind of
62 mph with a gust of 94 mph was reported at the Federal Aviation Administration station at Miami International Airport. A pressure of 940 millibars was measured in the calm of the eye on Upper Sugarloaf Key.

Tornadoes are possible through tonight, mainly across southern, central and eastern portions of the Florida Peninsula.

UPDATE 9 A.M.

The National Hurricane Center has reported that the eye of Category 4 Hurricane Irma has begun to move away from the Florida Keys and track toward landfall on Florida's mainland. A projected impact point on the Gulf Coast appears to be in the Longboat Key area.

Irma is currently holding sustained winds of 130 mph and is moving north-northwest at 8 mph.

A 93 mph gust was recently measured at Carysfort Reef Light near Key Largo.  A National Ocean Service station in Key West just reported a sustained wind of 67 mph and a gust to 89 mph.

UPDATE 8:30 A.M.

The National Hurricane Center has announced that the center of Hurricane Irma made landfall at Cudjoe Key in the lower Florida Keys. A gust to 106 mph was just reported at the National Key Deer Refuge in Big Pine Key.

UPDATE 7 A.M.

Positioned just 20 miles east-southeast, Hurricane Irma — which reclaimed Category 4 status overnight — was about to make landfall with the Florida Keys in the 7 a.m. report Sunday from the National Hurricane Center.

For Northwest Florida, there was no change overnight as the weather was obviously taking a turn along the Emerald Coast. A Tropical Storm Warning remains in effect west of Indian Pass in Gulf County to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line and a Hurricane Warning is in effect from Fernandina Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to Indian Pass.

Indian Pass, located near Apalachicola, remains the northern most point along the Gulf of Mexico to be under a Hurricane Warning from Irma.

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area in the next 48 hours. This warning indicates a high probability of the area taking on sustained winds between 39 and 73 mph.

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area in the next 48 hours. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

Irma now is 110 miles south of Naples, the area along the Gulf Coast where forecasters believe Irma will make its catastrophic landfall with Florida. From Cape Sable to Captiva, the Hurricane Center is predicting 10 to 15 feet of storm surge, where another 10 to 15 inches of rainfall is expected.

The eastern Florida Panhandle is currently predicted to get 3 to 6 inches of rain through Wednesday plus experience possible tornadoes, though the possibility of twisters is consistent across the state.

Irma is holding maximum sustained winds of 130 mph as it approaches Florida and the minimum central pressure has dropped to 929 millibars (27.43 inches).

On the forecast track, the eye of Irma should move over the Lower Florida Keys shortly, and then move near or over the west coast of the Florida Peninsula later today through tonight. Irma should then move inland over northern Florida and southwestern Georgia on Monday afternoon.

While weakening is forecast, Irma is expected to remain a powerful hurricane while it moves through the Florida Keys and near the west coast of Florida.

The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water is expected to reach the following HEIGHTS ABOVE GROUND if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide:

Cape Sable to Captiva: 10 to 15 feet

Captiva to Ana Maria Island: 6 to 10 feet

Card Sound Bridge through Cape Sable, including the Florida Keys: 5 to 10 feet

Ana Maria Island to Clearwater Beach, including Tampa Bay: 5 to 8 feet

North Miami Beach to Card Sound Bridge, including Biscayne Bay: 3 to 5 feet

South Santee River to Fernandina Beach: 4 to 6 feet

Clearwater Beach to Ochlockonee River: 4 to 6 feet

Fernandina Beach to Jupiter Inlet: 2 to 4 feet

North of North Miami Beach to Jupiter Inlet: 1 to 2 feet

The deepest water will occur along the immediate coast in areas of onshore winds, where the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves.

Irma is expected to produce the following rain accumulations through Wednesday:

The Florida Keys: 15 to 20 inches, isolated 25 inches.

The southern Florida peninsula: 10 to 15 inches, isolated 20 inches.

The remainder of the Florida peninsula and southeast Georgia: 8 to 12 inches, isolated 16 inches.

The rest of Georgia, eastern Florida Panhandle, southern and western

South Carolina, and western North Carolina: 3 to 6 inches, isolated 10 inches.

Eastern Alabama and southern Tennessee: 2 to 5 inches.

In all areas this rainfall may cause life-threatening flash floods and, in some areas, mudslides.

Warnings and watches in effect for Florida are:

Storm Surge Warning

—South Santee River southward to Jupiter Inlet

—North Miami Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to the Ochlockonee River

—Florida Keys

—Tampa Bay

Hurricane Warning

—Fernandina Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to Indian Pass in Gulf County

—Florida Keys

—Lake Okeechobee

—Florida Bay

Hurricane Watch

—North of Fernandina Beach to Edisto Beach

Tropical Storm Warning

—West of Indian Pass to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line

—North of Fernandina Beach to South Santee River