A new hurricane has struck the US, sending tropical storm Isaac to the coast and causing widespread flooding and power outages across much of the South.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Isaac is moving northwest from Florida, then headed toward the US Gulf coast by Tuesday morning, bringing tropical storm-force winds, heavy rain and severe flooding to the Carolinas and northern Florida.
Isaac’s winds are expected to be at least 90 mph (130 km/h), with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph (180 km/hr), NHC meteorologist Kevin Burt said.
The hurricane has been moving eastward since Saturday and has sustained winds near 70 mph (110 km/hour).
Isaac is expected to pass through the Carolina and southern Florida on Monday.
It is currently moving north-northeast at about 11 mph (20 km/t), with the center of circulation moving west-northwest toward the Gulf of Mexico.
Burt said the NHC forecast of Isaac is more accurate than the NWS forecast of Hurricane Irma, which has been tracking near the coast of Florida and near the Florida Keys, but it is still far from a Category 5 hurricane.
The NHC said Isaac’s path will eventually move into the Gulf and eventually into the Atlantic Ocean, but that it is likely to be a Category 4 hurricane by Wednesday.
The NHC has said the strongest winds are possible as Isaac moves toward the coast, with the NWR forecast that it could hit up to 40 mph (64 km/s) at landfall.
Isaac has sustained maximum sustained wind gusts of 100 mph (161 km/g), the NCH said.
Isaac has sustained wind speeds of at least 100 mph at the moment, the NCC said.
A few other hurricanes have been tracked to the south of the US since Isaac.
The most recent was Hurricane Maria, which made landfall in Puerto Rico on October 31.
Hurricane Jose also made landfall over Puerto Rico in September, but its path is still uncertain.
A strong hurricane in the Gulf was last active on September 27, the last hurricane to make landfall in the Atlantic in the United States.
Hurricanes are generally categorized as Category 3 or 4 by the NCLC, which means the storm will cause damage to the coasts of the United Kingdom and Ireland.