Hurricane Jose is taking slow, looping path

A gas pump is covered after a gas station ran out of gas Thursday Sept. 7 2017 in Miami

Related Image Expand Collapse A gas pump is covered after a gas station ran out of gas Thursday Sept. 7 2017

"There is not a gasoline shortage in the USA, but instead localized challenges - power outages, impassable roads, debris - in Florida keeping gasoline supplies from where they are needed most", said Arnette.

Irma's core was near the heavily populated Tampa-St. A large number of the state's assisted living facilities, whose residents often rely on electricity-dependent medical equipment, had no backup generators and reported being completely without power on Monday, according to the report.

The cyclone, located 640 miles north of San Juan, Puerto Rico as of 5 p.m. Tuesday, is a minimal hurricane containing maximum sustained winds of 75 miles per hour. During power outages, residents will sometimes run their generators inside their homes or garages.

Irma shifted slightly west overnight, putting Florida cities such as Naples and Tampa in the direct path of the storm's eye. However, the state's largest utility, FPL, said on Tuesday that would restore power to eastern Florida by this weekend, and to western Florida by Sept 22. "There is a lot of damage", Scott said. "It means it hasn't gotten to us yet", Koon said.

The St. Johns - 315 miles long and three miles wide at points - is expected to continue threatening communities in northeast Florida because the huge volumes of water the river is holding have no place to go, according to Angie Enyedi, an incident meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

A scrap yard full of vehicles is seen covered by floodwater in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma in Callahan, Fla. And an airborne relief mission, led by C-130 military cargo planes, was gearing up to bring emergency supplies to the Keys.

What awaits residents in the Middle and Upper Keys is unclear, but there are signs that Irma, which made its first USA landfall on Cudjoe Key, about 20 miles east of Key West, was anything but merciful to the Conch Republic.

In downtown Miami, two of the two dozen construction cranes looming over the skyline collapsed in the wind.

"If [Irma] had gone up the East Coast and if it had gone through Miami-Dade County ... then the losses would've been $100 billion or more", he said. Firefighters later took her to the hospital.

"It's going to be pretty hard for those coming home", said Petrona Hernandez, whose concrete home on Plantation Key with 35-foot walls was unscathed, unlike others a few blocks away. The Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Orlando airports shut down. Miami Beach barred outsiders from the island.

"What happened was the storm continued - after interacting with Cuba - to move west-northwest", Jones said.

Six deaths in Florida have been blamed on Irma, along with three in Georgia and one in SC.

Some 4.3 million homes and businesses, or about 9 million people, were without power at midday Wednesday in Florida and nearby states.

Even more powerful could be the storm surges that threaten to swallow Florida's coastal cities.

"Small boats floating down the street next to furniture and refrigerators".

Jones said the severity of the storm surge depended on which side of the storm Tampa was on.

Caribbean island residents emerged from bunkers and shelters to begin surveying and cleaning up the damage from Hurricane Irma on Sunday as the trailing Hurricane Jose passed farther north of the islands than expected.

"I just want to go home!" "And here we are". He and two others had ridden out the storm there. "I'm ready to just stay open for good".

President Donald Trump plans to visit storm-stricken Florida on Thursday, the White House said, his third such trip to a weather devastated state after a spate of violent U.S. weather. Colleton County, Beaufort County, and Jasper County's barrier islands are to be evacuated effective 10 a.m. ahead of the storm. Several people posted photos of the mammals on Facebook amid reports rescuers were able to later drag them to deeper water.

A weakened but still unsafe Irma pushed inland Monday as it hammered Florida with winds and floodwaters that created hazards even for rescuers trying to help beleaguered residents.

RAPPAPORT: They are north of the center of the storm.

President Donald Trump approved a disaster declaration for Florida, opening the way for federal aid.

Florida's governor activated all 7,000 members of the Florida National Guard, and 10,000 guardsmen from elsewhere were being deployed.

There have been 12 Hurricane Irma-related deaths throughout the state of Florida, Alberto C. Moscoso, a spokesman for Florida Division of Emergency Management, said Tuesday evening. You know, you're going to get the wind and the rain on the east coast, but right now, it's impacting the Keys.

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