Sunday, August 31, 2008

Gustav to create 5 metre storm surge

"You need to be getting your butts moving out of New Orleans now." - Nagin
clipped from
Hurricane Gustav moves away Cuba and towards the U.S. Gulf Coast, as seen in this NOAA satellite image taken on Saturday evening, Aug. 30, 2008.

Gustav is expected to become an "extremely dangerous" Category 5 storm, the most powerful hurricane possible, as it roars through Cuba and heads toward the U.S. Gulf coast.

Waves caused by the Hurricane Gustav hit the sea front of Havana's 'Malecon', on Saturday, Aug. 30, 2008. (AP / Ismael Francisco - Prensa Latina)
Category 5 storms have sustained winds of more than 249 kilometres per hour. Winds of that speed will create a storm surge of more than five metres, rip off most roofs and completely destroy mobile homes, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami.

At 11 p.m ET on Saturday, Gustav had maximum sustained winds of 220 kilometres per hour with higher gusts. The centre of the storm was located 145 km west of Havana, Cuba.

The National Hurricane Centre says Gustav "could reach Category five intensity" in the next 24 hours and is "extremely dangerous."

Cuba is rushing to evacuate 240,000 people from the storm's path.

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