Ike Crashes Into Cuba and Is Headed for the Gulf Coast

September 08, 2008 01:43 PM
by Cara McDonough
100-mph winds and 50-foot waves forced the evacuation of 900,000 people in Cuba Monday. The Category 2 hurricane could gain strength before hitting the U.S.
At least 1,000 homes in Cuba were destroyed or damaged by Ike when the storm made landfall in the city of Baracoa Sunday night. Now, residents in the western part of the island are rushing to get necessities before Ike hits, CNN reports.

The National Weather Service states that at 11 a.m. on Monday the government of Cuba had issued a hurricane warning for western provinces. Ike’s maximum wind gusts are currently measuring at 100 mph. Before landing in Cuba, Ike caused the deaths of at least 73 people in Haiti when the storm deposited major rain and flooding there, although the hurricane’s eye never even reached the country.

Ike is expected to move into the Gulf of Mexico after leaving Cuba, where it could gain strength, forecasters say. It is too soon to know where the storm may hit along the U.S. Gulf Coast, reports CNN, but the latest maps indicate that the most likely chances for the storm’s U.S. landfall would be as a Category 3 storm near the Texas-Louisiana border on Saturday. “Like I told you before Gustav, let’s hope it’s all a false alarm,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said.

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