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Hurricane Michelle Brings Winds up to 135 Miles per Hour

Aired November 4, 2001 - 08:09   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR: A hurricane warning is out for the Florida Keys. CNN meteorol -- meteorologist -- excuse me, I have a hard time getting that out, Jill.

JILL BROWN, CNN METEOROLOGIST: That's a tough one.

SAVIDGE: It is. Good morning.

BROWN: Good morning.

We do have Hurricane Michelle, Category Four; a major hurricane. The season's not over with until the end of this month. So this is not that unusual, although a late-season hurricane.

One hundred forty miles now, south of Havana, Cuba, and it's picked up a little bit of speed. So it's moving more quickly; that's expected. We probably will see it pick up a little more speed as we go through today -- as it accelerates off to the northeast. Wind to 135 miles per hour, and chances are that won't change a whole lot until it makes landfall in Cuba.

And, by the way, it was expected to make a direct hit over the Isle of Youth, which is right here. And the eye of the hurricane has been somewhat obscured by clouds, but you can pick it up a little bit better here, after a brief spell -- and it does look that eye may be on the eastern tip or maybe even just off the east tip of the Isle of Youth right now. And the hurricane-force winds extend out about 45 miles from the center.

So chances are they're getting hurricane-force winds right now out of Havana. On the other side of the island we've had reports of wind gusts up to about 30 miles per hour, and some rain up to the Florida Keys. We've had some heavy rain up through Hollywood Beach, Florida. They're waiting and watching for Hurricane Michelle.

Things don't look too bad right now. But some gusty winds can be expected. The rain will be coming in, if you don't already have it in South Florida. It could be heavy at times today. We'll be hearing about heavy surf. We could have some beach erosion. And, as Marty had mentioned, hurricane warnings are in effect for the Florida Keys. Even though we're not expecting a direct hit here, we should have wind gusts of hurricane force in the next 24 hours.

And, Marty, that -- Cuba is a thin island, but it's mountainous. So as this hurricane goes across it, we should see it weaken. So even if the hurricane goes off its track and gets closer to Florida, even made a direct hit, it should be weaker once it crosses over Cuba. So we'll keep you advised as this progresses today. Back to you.

SAVIDGE: All right, Jill, thanks very much. Don't take offense if I call you a "weather expert" in the future.

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