After wreaking havoc in Haiti, where the death toll has been updated to 7, and downing power lines and trees all across Cuba, Issac is making his way to Key West. Although Duval St. is a bit subdued, many are choosing to remain in "paradise."
According to the National Hurricane Center, Isaac will hit hurricane strength, which means sustained winds of at least 74 miles per hour, as its eye crosses the Florida Keys late Sunday. At 11 a.m. EDT Isaac was about 70 nautical miles east-southeast of Key West and moving north-northwest at 18 miles per hour. The maximum sustained winds were registered at 65 miles per hour.
National Weather Service
Key West and the entire Florida Keys chain are bracing for storm surge of up to 4 feet, strong winds, and the possibility of tornadoes. Both airports on the island chain closed Saturday night and residents began streaming into storm shelters, the Associated Press reports.
Dale Shelton, who lives in Key West and is staying in a storm shelter, told the AP"This is a huge inconvenience."Reuters is reporting more than half of the restaurants and other businesses in Key West were shuttered, perhaps due to many tourists heading home early in anticipation of Isaac. The Key West Beach cam shows rough surf, gusting winds and rain in Key West at 3:44 PM EDT. The Live Duval cam and South Street cam both show rain and mainly deserted streets.
It is no surprise there is not much activity on the roadways. Key West law enforcement and emergency management officials ordered visitors and residents to remain indoors as the storm moves past the city. According to NBC News, Monroe County Emergency Management Director Irene Toner announced: “You’ve chosen to remain in the Keys during this storm and the only safe place for you to be is indoors." Stay off roads and don’t go outside.”