Hurricane Irma has strengthened as it churns westward through the central Atlantic Ocean and could threaten several land areas over the next week, including the Lesser Antilles, the Bahamas and potentially the U.S. East Coast. The center of Irma is located over 900 miles east of the Leeward Islands and is moving just south of due west at about 15 mph. For the next five days, Irma will move west-southwestward, then west-northwest again on the south side of a ridge of high pressure called the Bermuda high, centered in the central Atlantic. Some intensity fluctuations are likely, but overall Irma is expected to gain strength and it could become a Category 4 hurricane in the days ahead.
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Teunis Felter has over 20 years experience as an author, editor, and scientist. When not exploring outside, he enjoys reading history, researching genealogy, and civilly discussing politics.