September 2, 20172558Views

Hurricane Irma remains a very strong hurricane…preparedness actions should continue

The Department of Disaster Management continues to follow the progress of Hurricane Irma now located approximately 1135 miles east of the Leeward Islands. Irma is moving towards the west at 15 miles per hour with maximum sustained winds of 110 miles per hour.

Irma appears to have remained stable based upon satellite imagery. Gradual intensification is likely during the next several days as environmental conditions are expected to be quite favorable for this to take place. Only eyewall replacement cycles are likely to prevent intensification from occurring. In addition, it should gradually expand in size, especially once it moves north of the Greater Antilles. Forecasters expect Irma to eventually become a large category 4 hurricane with winds reaching as high as 150 mph.

Irma continues on its west-southwest motion. The latest model guidance indicates that Irma may pass closer to the Leeward and Virgin Islands. Forecasters have shifted their track a little south of the previous, closer to the Leeward Islands.

Currently Irma is located at latitude 18.5 degrees North , longitude 44.6 degrees west with hurricane force winds extending outward up to 25 miles per hour from the centre and tropical storm force winds up to 70 miles. Pressure is 973 mb.

The National Hurricane Centre has noted that Irma is expected to be a major hurricane when it moves closer to the Lesser Antilles early next week, producing rough surf and rip currents. Irma could also cause dangerous wind, storm surge, and rainfall impacts on some islands, although it is too soon to specify where and when those hazards could occur.

Residents are urged to continue their preparedness efforts for this approaching hurricane and continue to monitor the powerful hurricane as it has the potential to affect the British Virgin Islands.

Please continue to monitor local media stations, DDM’s website ( and Facebook at BVIDDM for regular updates.

Disclaimer: The Department of Disaster Management (DDM) is not an official Meteorological Office. The Information disseminated by the Department is gathered from a number of professional sources used or contracted by the DDM to provide such information. This information is to be used as a guide by anyone who has interest in local weather conditions. By no means can the DDM or the BVI Government be held accountable by anyone who uses this information appropriately for legal evidence or in justification of any decision which may result in the loss of finances, property or life.