tv ABC World News Tonight With David Muir ABC September 7, 2017 3:30pm-4:00pm PDT
tonight, breaking news from miami. hurricane irma closing in on the american coast, miami and south florida could take a direct hit. irma expected to hit as a massive category 4. tonight, the deadly path of destruction already across several caribbean islands. americans trapped. images from barbuda and st. martin. ginger zee with the track just in, and it's not just florida. georgia ordering evacuations, states of emergency in the carolinas -- while here in florida tonight, a million people now told to get out of irma's path. gas pumps running dry. state police now escorting fuel tankers. the other major news tonight. donald trump jr. answering five hours of questions on capitol hill. the wildfires in the west,
new reporting tonight, homes burning to the ground. the video. the famous nfl player claiming excessive force, saying police had no idea who he was. and breaking now. a massive security breach possibly affecting more than 143 million americans and your social security numbers. good evening, tonight from south florida where this evening as we travel through miami, you can see it everywhere. families, store owners, boarding up, getting supplies and in many places, searching for gas. this is a monster storm, and if new track just out shows a category 4 slamming into the city and all of south florida, and then moving right up the state. already a deadly and devastating path across the caribbean. just listen to the winds toni t tonigtonigh tonight. that is irma tearing across the island of anguilla, a category 5 storm right now. winds of 175 miles an hour. on the island of barbuda, nearly
every building and home damaged or destroyed as we come on the air tonight, irma is now plowing into turks and caicos. the most dangerous side of the hurricane hitting there. this evening, a hurricane watch is officially in place here in south florida. the buildings, windows and crepes across there city, and first, abc's linzie janis leads us off with the devastating images tonight. >> reporter: tonight, the images now emerging of the utter devastation hurricane irma left behind. buildings and trees ripped apart. this communications tower snapped. hundreds now homeless. >> i was standing, and i would not want to see a hurricane like this again. >> reporter: barbuda's prime minister telling abc news its as if a bomb was dropped on the tiny island, one of the first hit. >> my main concern right now is how we are going to survive after this. >> reporter: st. martin next in irma's crosshairs. shipping containers tossed like toys.
at least 14 now dead in the storm zone, including 16-year-old xander venesia. drowning in rough surf off the coast. the death toll expected to rise and scores more coast guard teams like this one have been flying in and out of the virgin islands rescuing people. our cameraman on that chopper capturing scenes of utter devastation as irma moved across the caribbean. we met canadian college student alex demoor, badly hurt in a fall in st. thomas airlifted to puerto rico for treatment. we lent her our phone so she could call her family. she and american student maddie gortat leaving the island with one pair of flip flops between them and little else. the pair describing how they rode out the storm. >> we didn't know if the roof was going to come off at any moment. >> we were praying. >> we were praying the whole time. >> reporter: irmany now moving in on the turks and caicos islands.
the storm surge could be double that. >> i'm anxious about the storm. i have never been through a hurricane. >> reporter: california firefighter, josh livingston there celebrating his birthday, now hunkered down and bracing for a category 5 monster. >> we have been watching some of the destruction on the other islands. we're kind of waiting for it to hit this island. >> and linzie janis joins us now from san juan, and linzie, nearly a million people without power. hundreds of thousands without water tonight, and you were saying that authorities told you it could be months before power is restored there? >> reporter: that's right, david. and here's the reason why. there are hundreds and hundreds of trees like this one downed across this island. this one actually has a power line tangled up in it, david. >> linzie janis leading us off tonight. linzie, our thanks to you, and let's get to the storm track. chief meteorologist, ginger zee s back at the weather wall in mork. what does it now mean for the u.s.? >> reporter: it could mean catastrophe, especially for
southeast florida. let me take you through this storm. hurricane irma still a category 5 over the turks and caicos it will go tonight, and then it's friday into saturday where it's just south of florida and it goes into the keys early sunday morning. 5:00 a.m. sunday, places like keilar goe, feeling the ridiculously strong winds. through the day on sunday into monday, it will keep going north as a strong category 1, and then tropical storms and this cone now involves indiana and ohio. this goes from jupiter inlet over west palm beach, and these hurricane watches are for all of south florida, and we stopped the time here at sunday afternoon, and it will have a wind gust of 127, david. >> just incredible, and while we have you, ginger, we wanted to show everyone at home the image that drives the real danger here in miami and south florida. we know that miami floods easily. look at this tonight.
if you had a 3-foot storm surge, those areas in yellow would be underwater. a storm surge higher than 3 feet, and watch this. the areas in red go completely under, and that's why they are so concerned here in miami tonight, ginger. authorities are trying to get the warnings out. >> reporter: water is one of the most powerful things, and this does not take into account high tide. high tide happens just after midnight, and just after noon, that could make the surge from 5 to 10, and make it 8 to 13 easily, david. >> bracing here in south florida tonight. ginger, thank you. the island of barbuda taking a direct hit from hurricane irmany ma. more than 90% of the island homes and buildings destroyed and now hurricane jose is now on a path to hit that same island. moments ago, i spoke with the prime minister, now an urgent effort under way to get everyone out. prime minister, thank you for joining us, and the pictures coming in are just devastating. i know you have had a chance to fly over the island and to visit it in person.
describe what you saw for us. >> well, for me, i never contemplated this. the landscapers just decimated. 90% or more of the buildings were damaged. it literally destroyed a country. >> mr. prime minister, i know you described it as though a bomb went off on that island, and we are all watching the track now of hurricane jose, which could get to that island as well. just incredible that you could be facing two hundrrricanes now. you're trying to get everybody off the island? >> well, we are. we're active, and actions have taken place. we will have the island completely evacuated. >> mr. prime minister, thank you for your time. i know you're very busy, and please make sure the people of your island know they are in our thoughts and prayers. >> many thanks. preparing for their second hurricane there now. here in florida tonight, more than a million people have been ordered to evacuate. we have seen the traffic jams
going in one direction out of the storm zone all day here. many gasation stations have run dprie. abc's gio benitez is right here in south florida tonight. >> we started crawling. we're stopped right now. >> reporter: tonight, heavy traffic clogging major florida highways. >> everyone's trying to get to the same place, out. >> reporter: as more than a million floridians are asked to evacuate -- >> i know many of you are stuck in traffic. i know it's frustrating, but please be patient. evacuations are not meant to be convenient. they are meant to keep you safe. >> reporter: officials in key west telling residents that staying behind is irresponsible and dangerous. >> we are running out of time. the opportunity to leave is now. >> reporter: some in the keys fleeing by free shuttle bus to a miami shelter. >> i'm scared to death. i've been here 18 years i've never ever dealt with anything like this. >> reporter: on the only road out of the keys, people abandoning their cars near elevated bridges, hoping to avoid flooding. many on the road facing fuel
shortag shortages. nearly 35% of gas stations in miami and ft. lauderdale are out of gas. 41% out up in gainesville, too. using police escorts to get fuel in faster, several hospitals evacuating too. one air lifting patients in a c-130 to a hospital in alabama. >> those gas stations running empty, alarming here tonight. gio benitez joins us from key west, along the long road in and out, and are people heeding the warning to get out? >> reporter: they are, david. take a look at the road behind me. it is mostly empty. that's because so many people have already left. i can tell you this. we're getting out of here first thing in the morning, david. >> all right. good news. stay safe to the team right there. gio, thank you. a million people may be trying to get away, but that means millions more will be staying in the storm zone, and as you look across here at miami, you can see so many high-rises and the question
tonight, can the construction of the windows withstand a category 4 hurricane? we asked abc's tom llamas to take us up into the buildings. how much faster and more powerful will the winds be, the higher you go? >> reporter: tonight miami's glass towers and the cranes that build them causing concern hurricane irma could shatter it all. >> those are big targets out there. >> again, we're going to lose buildings that are going to have to be repaired, but i don't think buildings are going to completely collapse. >> reporter: 25 cranes are being secured before the storm, those that live near them told to evacuate. developers and builders abc news spoke with tell us buildings in downtown miami will hold up, but that high-rises could sway, some up to 12 inches. >> i expect to feel some here. we did feel it here during matthew and that was tropical storm. >> reporter: people in high-rises don't have to worry about debris like you down on the ground but up here, 50 stories, with a view like this, you do have to worry about something else.
the wind is much more powerful up here. hurricane researchers tell us on the fiftieth floor a category 4 hurricane winds at 140 miles per hour would be 220 miles per hour that high up. south beach resident andres asion will ride out the storm in his 21 st floor condo. he has storm impact windows and cameras set up to watch the storm apprach. but even he has a plan b. >> "my plan if it gets too crazy ill go into the elevator shaft and it's like a fortress." >> reporter: other miami residents lined up outside of this packed costco, trying to prep by getting supplies that are now scarce. even water, tough to find. >> tom, people are not going to forget what you just reported. how much stronger those winds will get. stay away from the windows here in miami. reports of price gouching. are people being ripped off as they try to prepare? >> reporter: in some cases they are. i just got off the phone with the office of attorney general here in florida. since monday, david, get this. they have received 4,000 complaints of price gouging. >> tom llamas with us here in south florida. tom, thank you.
hurricane irma is causing major disruptions in air travel across the country. some 4,000 flights have already been canceled, and look at this image tonight. a lot of air traffic to and from florida. you can see it light there. so many trying to get out of the storm zone and tonight there is a new and urgent plea just in from the miami airport for passengers still showing up hoping to find a flight. abc's amy robach is there. >> reporter: the rush to get out of the storm zone resulting in nights in airports. >> i have to spend the night in the airport because all the hotels are if i woulded. >> reporter: passengers in wheelchairs able to board at west palm beach, but at miami international airport -- hundreds showing up without tickets and finding none. the major airlines suspending operations by friday evening. already more than 4,000 flights in irma's path canceled.
12 cruise ships canceling chooses. the norwegian cruise ship coming back to miami early to let people off. >> it's a lot of stress. it's very stressful. no one knew what was going to going. >> reporter: airport officials are asking passengers who don't already have reservations to stay away from the airport. as you can see, these airports are extremely busy, and they say if you are here when they halt operations tomorrow, you will be bused to a shelter. book online or over the phone, david. >> in, amy, thank you. hurricane irma has already made history tonight. even before it hits the u.s. maintaining winds of 185 miles an hour for a record 36 hours straight, and we wanted to show you something. since 1970, just four category 4 hurricanes have made u.s. mainland. in 1992, andrew, in homestead florida with 165 miles per hour
winds, and irma is stronger than all of them. senior meteorologist, rob marciano, in key lar goe tonight on what is making this so dangerous. >> reporter: irma's first strike giving us a glimpse of its sheer power, an explosion of nature's potent mix. the hurricane morphing into a monster because of a rare combination of conditions. high humidity and deep, warm water, above average feed the storm. there's also a lack of upper level winds that would choke the storm, and irma has avoided large land masses that would break apart the hurricane. >> it is like going over a giant all you can eat buffet for a hurricane right now. >> reporter: tonight, the eye 30 miles wide with the clouds swirling around it, 600 miles across. with the inner core equivalent to an ef-3 tornado. most striking, the longevity of irma's power, that record breaking stretch of 185 mph sustained winds for over 36 hours. >> and rob marciano reporting in from keylarg go, o, and we're
dealing with a situation here. that is one of three active hurricanes turning tonight? >> reporter: we have katia in the gulf of mexico, and now jose which is another major hurricane. a category 3 strength likely to impact some of the islands that were devastated by irma. the last time this situation happened was back in 2010, and we're clearly getting into the height of hurricane season, which is clearly a very active season at that. david? >> all right, rob marciano tonight. rob, amy, tom, gio, linzie, all of our teams out in the storm zone already. we thank you all, and we will have much more on "good morning america." a reminder to download the abc news app and sign up for breaking news alerts throughout the storm. in the meantime, there is much more ahead on "world news tonight" this thursday. donald trump jr. answering five hours of questions on capitol hill today. what he is now saying about that meeting with the russian lawyer. also breaking now, the massive security breach across this country. the new warning possibly affecting 143 million americans
and your social security numbers. the new video tonight, and the police takedown of an nfl star. he claims he was targeted because of his race, and officers did not know who he was. police now responding tonight. and we do have news this evening about the wildfires in the west we have been tracking. fires burn across eight states. more homes destroyed. much more ahead on this special edition of "world news tonight." ...it starts a chain reaction... ...that's heard throughout the connected business world. at&t network security helps protect business, from the largest financial markets to the smallest transactions, by sensing cyber-attacks in near real time and automatically deploying countermeasures. keeping the world of business connected and protected. that's the power of and. you know how painful heartburn can be. for fast-acting, long-lasting relief, try doctor recommended gaviscon. it quickly neutralizes stomach acid and helps keep acid down for hours.
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an acquaintance told don junior the lawyer had dirt on hillary clinton. the president's son responded, if it's what you say, i love it. today, don junior told the committee he took the meeting because "to the extent they had information concerning the fitness, character or qualifications of a presidential candidate, i believed that i should at least hear them out." don junior has described the meeting as par for the course in a political campaign. >> for me this was opposition research -- >> reporter: he says nothing came of it, and sources say he told investigators there was no collusion. and he never told his father about the meeting. did donald trump jr. sway some of your concerns? >> there are still a lot of gaps, and a lot of questions to be answered. >> reporter: don junior's story has been evolving over time, but in a statement, he says he answered every question today, and trusts this interview fully satisfied the committee, but lawmakers i talked with say they want him to appear again, this time in public, david.
>> mary, thank you. when we come back, the takedown of the nfl star. also the breaking news on that massive security breach. 1 143 million americans possibly affected and your social security numbers. and the wildfires we're watching in the west. we have new reporting tonight. homes burning to the ground. much more news ahead. they'll trr medicare card number. so they can steal your identity, commit medicare fraud. what can you do? guard your card? guard your card? just like your credit card. nobody gets my number, unless i know they should have it. to protect your identity, new medicare cards without social security numbers will be mailed next year. visit medicare.gov/fraud stay sharp people! essential for vinyl, but maybe not for people with rheumatoid arthritis. because there are options. like an "unjection™". xeljanz xr. a once daily pill for adults with moderate to severe ra for whom methotrexate did not work well.
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video shows police responding to calls of a possible shooter inside a casino. tmz sports video showing michael bennett on the ground, and claims he was singled out by police because he is black. police are now denying that claim. when we come back here tonight, america strong. even with a category 4 storm bearing down here, there was one thing we saw today you will want to see too. how much money do you think you'll need in retirement? then we found out how many years that money would last them. how long do you think we'll keep -- oooooohhh! you stopped! you're gonna leave me back here at year 9? how did this happen? it turned out, a lot of people fell short, of even the average length of retirement. we have to think about not when we expect to live to, but when we could live to. let's plan for income that lasts all our years in retirement. prudential. bring your challenges. the unpredictability of a flaree may weigh on your mind.
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for days, she had been searching for a generator for her ailing father. >> my father's on oxygen and i'm worried about this storm. >> reporter: pam, who was next in line to buy a generator watched as the last one was sold to another shopper. she broke down in tears. that's when ramon santiago, a complete stranger, came up to her. >> she needed the generator. it's okay. no worry for them. >> reporter: he insisted she take his generator. >> i'm very overwhelmed by that man. god will bless that man. >> reporter: in this time of need, two strangers coming together. just incredible sight today. our thanks to wf tv, and thank you for watching. i hope to see you right back here tomorrow. good night.
look at the size of the storm. it's wider than our entire state and could cause major life threatening impacts from coast to coast. we cannot save you when the storm hits. >> evacuation orders are in affect for florida to north carolina as the massive hurricane irma gets closer to the u.s. it's already been deadly in the caribbean. good afternoon. thank you for joining us. >> at least nine people have already been killed after the category 5 hurricane devastated several caribbean islands causing widespread damage. florida is preparing to take what they are saying is a direct hit from this extremely dangerous storm. the most powerful in the atlantic in more than a decade. >> evacuations have been ordered across the southeast with the governor's of florida, georgia and south carolina demanding people seek safer ground. abc news reporter is in new smyrna beach, florida with the preparations under way there. >> reporter: hurricane irma
tearing through the caribbean. the deadly category 5 storm 175 miles an hour winds leaving utter devastation from stat m. e martin to puerto rico. >> the entire country has been decimated. i have never seen anything like this before. >> reporter: now florida bracing for what governor rick scott warns could be more disasterous than the worst hurricane to ever hit the state. >> the storm is bigger, faster and stronger than hurricane andrew. >> reporter: mandatory evacuations are in place in low lying and coastal parts of south florida. everyone in the keys ordered out. >> if you stay and being irresponsib irresponsible, don't expect us to risk the lives of our first responders because of your irresponsibility. >> reporter: from the gulf to the atlantic coast, floridans heeding the warning. traffic stretching for miles. lines for gas in some places