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Ian expected to become a major hurricane overnight or early Tuesday

hurricane ian mon 11 pm.jfif
Florida Public Radio Network

The center of Ian is expected to move near or over western Cuba overnight into early Tuesday. Ian will then emerge over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday, pass west of the Florida Keys late Tuesday, and approach the west coast of Florida on Wednesday into Thursday.

In the eastern Caribbean Sea, Ian strengthened into a hurricane with winds up to 75 miles an hour early on Monday morning.

The category two storm is expected to undergo rapid intensification over the next few days, and it could become a major hurricane overnight Monday or early Tuesday.

The National Hurricane Center at 11 p.m. Monday reported the center of Ian is expected to move near or over western Cuba overnight and early Tuesday. Ian will then emerge over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday, pass west of the Florida Keys late Tuesday, and approach the west coast of Florida on Wednesday into Thursday.

Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 105 mph (165 km/h) with higher gusts. Rapid strengthening is expected during the next day or so, and Ian is forecast to become a major hurricane overnight or early Tuesday when it is near western Cuba, and remain that strong over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday.

LIVE BLOG: Latest updates on Hurricane Ian across the Tampa Bay area

As of late Monday, the following alerts are in effect:

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for:

  • Cuban provinces of Isla de Juventud, Pinar del Rio, and Artemisa
  • Englewood to the Anclote River, including Tampa Bay
  • Dry Tortugas

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for:

  • Anclote River southward to Flamingo
  • Tampa Bay

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for:

  • Cuban provinces of La Habana, Mayabeque, and Matanzas
  • Lower Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge westward to Key West
  • Flamingo to Englewood

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for:

  • Florida Keys from the Card Sound Bridge westward to Key West
  • Dry Tortugas
  • Florida Bay
  • Aucilla River to Anclote River
  • Altamaha Sound to Flagler/Volusia County Line
  • Saint Johns River

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for:

  • North of Anclote River to the Suwannee River
  • Bonita Beach to Englewood

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for:

  • Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge to the Channel 5 Bridge
  • Lake Okeechobee
  • North of the Suwannee River to Indian Pass
  • Jupiter Inlet to Altamaha Sound

In addition to hazards posed by winds, Ian is expected to produce life-threatening storm surge along the Gulf Coast of Florida. Along the coast and farther inland, tornadoes will be possible as outer bands rotate inland later this week.

It is important to remember that the details of forecast track, impacts, and timing of impacts are likely to continue fluctuate over the next few days. Floridians are urged to continue watching the forecast, and to heed evacuation orders. Find out more about your evacuation zone by visiting floridadisaster.org.