Hurricane Maria Weakens as It Moves North

Hurricane Maria Weakens as It Moves North”

Still a category three hurricane, packing sustained wind speeds of 115mph and even stronger gusts, Maria will travel parallel to the coast of Florida, before skirting the Carolinas, Virginia and New England.

Puerto Rico remains without power, except for generators, and phone service is spotty, as officials struggle to provide food and water to those affected by the worst storm to hit the island of 3.4 million in almost a century.

According to the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) in an 11 a.m. ET update on Sunday, the hurricane is now "slightly weaker" and is moving northward.

Maria is not now forecast to impact metro Atlanta.

Hurricane Maria lashed the Turks and Caicos Islands on Friday after destroying homes, causing widespread flooding, crippling economies and killing at least 25 people on Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands. According to The Weather Channel, it's now located more than 500 miles south-southeast of Hatteras, North Carolina, moving north at about 9 mph.

Maria's tail end was still bringing drenching rain to Puerto Rico, and some parts of the island could have accumulated totals of up to 40 inches (101 cm) from the storm, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said. Fourteen people were reported dead on Dominica, which has a population of about 71,000.

The latest forecast doesn't have Maria actually making landfall in the USA, but the storm will be close enough to impact parts of the east coast. Some 25 towns remained cut off. (Reuters/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) A severely damaged school is seen from a Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey surveying the aftermath from Hurricane Maria in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands on September 21, 2017. Irma, one of the most powerful Atlantic storms on record, killed more than 80 people in the Caribbean and the United States.

Hurricane Maria has claimed more than 30 lives across the region and is the second devastating storm to hit the Caribbean in the past two weeks.

Other overseas territories including the British Virgin Islands and Anguilla heavily hit by Irma, have escaped the worst of Maria, with Montserrat also faring better than expected.

As temperatures continue to cool down, along with more disruptive winds from increasing cold fronts, tropical activity in the Atlantic typically goes down in October, although the season doesn't end until November 30.

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