One look at the satellite loop of Hurricane Maria tells you she means business.
165 mph winds
Maria is a symmetrical, tight, compact, extremely powerful category 5 hurricane. Top wind speeds with Maria are at 165 mph as of the 5 pm EDT update from the National Hurricane Center.
The wording is dire.
Maria is expected to remain at category 5 intensity as she makes a beeline for the USVI and Puerto Rico in the next 24 hours.
Strongest hurricane in Puerto Rico history
The last category 4 hurricane to make landfall in Puerto Rico was in 1932. On her current track and intensity Maria will be the strongest hurricane to make landfall in Puerto Rico history.
— Eric Blake 🌀 (@EricBlake12) September 19, 2017
Indeed the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season has been a meteorological train wreck. You don’t want to watch, but you can’t look away. The Caribbean islands have been hit by multiple damaging storms this season.
— Ian Livingston (@islivingston) September 19, 2017
Most of the longer range track guidance keeps Maria offshore form the U.S. mainland in the next week.
Jose pounds the beaches
Meanwhile Hurricane Jose spins off the east coast.
Jose is generating pounding surf along the Jersey Shore and Long Island.
— Kyle Dennis (@KyleDennisWx) September 19, 2017
Traffic cams in North Carolina’s Outer Banks show the battle between storm surf and road crews. At least MNDOT doesn’t have to deal with this.
— Bryant's Weather (@BryantsWx) September 19, 2017
I still expect a band of T-Storms to move east across Minnesota tonight. The core of strongest storms will be in western Minnesota and may pass north of the Twin Cities between 3 and 5 am.
Here’s the latest timing across Minnesota courtesy of the Twin Cities NWS.
The latest model runs continue to suggest a stalled front over Minnesota this weekend. That could generate multiple thunderstorm waves with heavy downpours.