The most extreme damage from Hurricane Irma may come from huge surges of water pushed onto land by wind

Hurricane Irma is a true monster, exceeding the size of Florida itself, and threatening to flatten structures throughout the state with extreme winds. But perhaps the biggest risk is now posed by storm surge – water pushed up onto land.

The animation above shows an experimental forecast for storm surge from the National Weather Service. It shows the height of water above the land’s surface in feet over time, from 7 a.m. EST today through 7 a.m. on Tuesday. (Sept. 9 – 12, 2017.)


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