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Hurricane Irma Blasts Into The Record Books With Lasting Intensity

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Hurricane Irma was the longest-lasting powerful hurricane or typhoon ever recorded, worldwide.

Irma sustained its 185-mph winds for 37 hours – “the longest any cyclone around the globe has maintained that intensity on record,” according to Phil Klotzbach, a research scientist at Colorado State University. The previous record was held by Typhoon Haiyan, also called Super Typhoon Yolanda, which hit the Philippines in 2013.

Irma was a hurricane for nearly 12 days. For more than three days of that total, it was a Category 5 — tying it with Cuba’s deadly 1932 storm and setting a record for the satellite era, Klotzbach says.

The National Hurricane Center has verified Klotzbach’s tally of Irma’s place in history, adding that some of the figures could change when the formal Tropical Cyclone Report is released later this year.

Irma has now been the subject of more than 80 advisories from the hurricane center, with the first dating back to Aug. 30, when it was a tropical storm with sustained wind speeds of 50 mph.

After the storm formed, it intensified quickly. In the span of 24 hours, Irma became a hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 100 mph. The storm then idled as it moved west across the Atlantic — before warmer waters gave it another growth spurt.

On Monday, Sept. 4, Irma’s sustained winds were 120 mph. On Sept. 5, they were 185 mph, with gusts of 213 mph. When it finally hit land, it devastated Barbuda,

Article source: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/09/12/550188154/hurricane-irma-blasts-into-the-record-books-with-lasting-intensity

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