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Mandatory evacuations hit Florida as Hurricane Irma prepares to strike

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FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA — The Daily News has confirmed with local officials that parts of Broward County on both sides of Federal Highway have been ordered to leave their homes amid what is believed to be a potentially deadly storm.    Officials say that the evacuations are mandatory, and, more are expected  come this evening.

Subsequently, Miami officials confirmed that Miami is also headed for its largest mandatory evacuation in history.  The National Weather Service confirmed to The Daily News in phone calls that Hurricane Irma victims won’t have much time to recover before Tropical Storm Jose  forms and catapults itself into a hurricane by this weekend. It is expected to pummel much of the same route that Hurricane Irma is slated to ravage.

Meanwhile, French authorities confirmed  translated text messages that people in St. Martin and St. Barthelemy  have been ordered to stay inside and are not allowed to leave their homes under any circumstances.

Back in Florida, while we were writing this report, we have also learned that the Keys will see a mandatory evacuation ordered tonight.   Officials say all of the above mentioned evacuations ARE mandatory, and residents are being ordered to leave.

As of 2:12 PM EST,  the last known location of Hurricane Irma was on the island of Barbuda.  The storm struck the island almost instantly causing grave damage. Homes were reported damaged; police stations lost their roofs,  and thousands of people have fled to shelters.  Antigua officials report that the storm is headed their way.

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As of this writing, the estimated wind speed of Hurricane Irma is at nearly 190 mph.


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