MIAMI, Florida- The NHS says Hurricane Irma’s strength continues to fluctuate, and is now back to a major hurricane. Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 115 mph (185 km/h) with higher gusts – a Category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some additional strengthening through Monday night is forecast. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles (35 km) from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles (130 km).
Irma is centered as of 5 a.m. AST/EDT over the tropical Atlantic Ocean about 945 miles (1520 km) east of the Leeward Islands, moving toward the west-southwest near 15 mph (24 km/h). It’s expected to continue on this course at a slightly slower forward speed through tonight, followed by a turn toward the west on Monday. Interests in the Leeward Islands should monitor the progress of Irma.
Get the latest on Irma from the National Hurricane Center at www.hurricanes.gov