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Hurricane Maria rocks Puerto Rico as island’s strongest storm in modern history

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(Note: This story will be updated throughout the day as the storm moves across Puerto Rico.)

Hurricane Maria, one of the 10 most intense storms on record in the Atlantic Ocean basin, roared ashore in southeastern Puerto Rico, near Yabucoa, at 6:15 a.m. ET. 

It hit the island as a powerful Category 4 storm, with maximum sustained winds of 155 miles per hour, down somewhat from its peak of 175 miles per hour on Tuesday night. 

This is the most intense storm to make landfall in Puerto Rico since at least the San Ciprian Hurricane of 1932, which was also a Category 4. The storm is likely to inflict its greatest damage to the communities along its southeastern shore, including Yabucoa, where inundation of 6 to 9 feet above normally dry ground is likely from the combination of storm surge flooding and high, battering waves.  Read more…

More about Climate, Science, Puerto Rico, Hurricanes, and Hurricane Irma

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Prime minister posts harrowing account of hurricane on Facebook

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Hurricane Maria is slamming the small Caribbean island of Dominica, and the prime minister is experiencing it firsthand — and posting about it on Facebook. 

The Category 5 storm hit the island on Monday night, when Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit posted these terrifying messages. 

A little before 10 p.m. ET, things got really bad. 

Shortly after, he followed it up with this more reassuring post. 

Still, the island is getting battered by 160 mph winds. It’s the first time in the country’s history that it has faced a Category 5 storm.  Read more…

More about Hurricane, Storms, Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria, and Science

"The damage is complete," Sanders told PRI's The Takeaway. "For the first time in 300 years, there’s not a single living person on the island of Barbuda — a civilization that has existed on that island for over 300 years has now been extinguished."

Hurricane Irma hit Barbuda on September 6 as a category 5 tropical cyclone. The 400 mile-across storm entirely swallowed the 62 square mile island, and laid waste to 95 percent of the island's structuresRead more...

More about Global Warming, Hurricane, Hurricane Irma, Barbuda, and Science'>
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After Irma, Barbuda’s 300-year-old civilization ‘extinguished’

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Ambassador Ronald Sanders, the island nation of Antigua and Barbuda’s ambassador to the United States, delivered a chilling report on the status of his country in the wake of Hurricane Irma.

“The damage is complete,” Sanders told PRI’s The Takeaway. “For the first time in 300 years, there’s not a single living person on the island of Barbuda — a civilization that has existed on that island for over 300 years has now been extinguished.”

Hurricane Irma hit Barbuda on September 6 as a category 5 tropical cyclone. The 400 mile-across storm entirely swallowed the 62 square mile island, and laid waste to 95 percent of the island’s structuresRead more…

More about Global Warming, Hurricane, Hurricane Irma, Barbuda, and Science

Little girl proves that anyone can handle post Irma clean-up

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Emergency Responders in Florida worked hard to cleanup post-Hurricane Irma. They received help from residents, including an adorable little girl.  Read more…

More about Mashable Video, Florida, Girl, Cleanup, and Hurricane Irma

Little girl proves that anyone can handle post Irma clean-up

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Emergency Responders in Florida worked hard to cleanup post-Hurricane Irma. They received help from residents, including an adorable little girl.  Read more…

More about Mashable Video, Florida, Girl, Cleanup, and Hurricane Irma

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Chainsaw nun is the symbol of the Hurricane Irma cleanup

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This nun is living on a prayer, or she’s just pretty badass when it comes to natural disaster relief. 

An off-duty cop in Miami went to check out the damage Hurricane Irma brought to a local neighborhood when he encountered a nun cutting up trees to clear the roadways…with a chainsaw.

Sister Margaret Ann wanted to help clean up damages after witnessing an almost car accident as a result of the storm. She took it upon herself to start the cleaning process.

She worked her way (in full on habit by the way) around one of the trees, unaware of her audience. Talk about b-o-s-s. Read more…

More about Watercooler, Nun, Hurricane Irma, Culture, and Web Culture