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The city of Tampa and the surrounding areas came face to face with Hurricane Irma on Sunday night after days of wondering how strong her wrath would be. After she blanketed much of the Caribbean as a Category 5 storm, and the National Hurricane Center had her coming straight for Hillsborough County as a Category 4, Irma ended up heading more northeast than expected.
Irma packed quite the punch in Polk County and in Orlando. Areas to the east of the eye of the storm were hit the hardest. As she moved out of the area, she was downgraded to a Tropical Storm. She is still brining a lot of rain and wind to northern Florida today.
“Irma weakened Monday morning from hurricane to a tropical storm as it moved about 100 miles north of Tampa, according to the National Hurricane Center, which said it was still producing some wind gusts near hurricane force,” reports the Washington Post.
Several areas in Tampa experienced high wind gusts and heavy rain for several hours. South Tampa and Davis Island experienced the most destruction from Irma. The majority of the damage in Tampa consisted of downed trees. Some people in flood zones experienced flooding inside of their homes coming along with the storm surge. Several people are without power today, but crews have already been working toward restoring that power and hope to be able to do so as soon as possible.
Below are some photos taken in Tampa, showing the damage that Irma left in her wake. While some areas got hit harder than others, it’s clear that Tampa was spared from the absolute worst, which many people had been preparing for since early last week.
The sun is out in Tampa this afternoon, but residents simply can’t forget about Irma just yet. Many have said that this was “Florida’s storm.” The powerful hurricane affected just about everyone in the Sunshine State and brought a great deal of fear along with her unclear plan.