Friday, August 26, 2011

Hurricane Irene: Update Saturday -- 5AM

It has been 1077 days since a hurricane has made landfall in the United States. The last cyclone to hit the U.S. was hurricane Ike on September 13, 2008. After nearly three years, we'll reset that number back to zero today.

As of 5am Saturday, Irene is directly over the Outer Banks and NC coast with 90 mph sustained winds and gusts of nearly 110 mph. The storm has been downgraded to a Category 1 due to a slight decrease in intensity, but that's not to say the threat of severe weather (and consequences) has diminished.

Airports are shutting down, areas of NYC are being mandatorily evacuated, public transporttaion is coming to a hault, professional sporting events are being rescheduled,  and the entire East Coast is preparing for one of the largest impacts from a hurricane in decades.

President Barak Obama has called Irene "extremely dangerous and costly" storm.