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tv   Politics Nation With Al Sharpton  MSNBC  September 10, 2017 5:00am-6:00am PDT

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right now the storm is 20 miles southeast of key west. landfall is expected to happen any moment. surges are expected to cause major damage with some areas seeing storm surges of up to 15 feet. now, we're going to get into that in a little bit. i want you to take a look at this, this is miami right now. the idea here is you look at those trees and you can see the sorts of winds that miami is getting. look at that palm tree, look at them swaying the way they are. now, not just that, tornado warnings are also out as wind gusts and rain continue to strike the southern portion of the state. over 400,000 people do not have power and that number is expected to rise dramatically, possibly reaching into the millions. let's bring in nbc's steve sosna, he is dealing with not just these winds but the fact that there are tornado watches in the area. >> that's right. these warnings pop up as quickly as they are issued. so we had a tornado warning in the miami area with circulation coming on board here, it has been canceled now, but more
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spinups definitely likely as these outer rain bands come pivoting in here rapidly. when that tornado warning was issued the storm was moving at 80 miles per hour. so it gives you little to no warning to prepare. so the latest here at 8:00 this morning is that eyewall is making landfall, it still hasn't technically made landfall by hurricane center definitions but it's awfully close and it's battering areas of the keys right now. we've seen top wind gusts of 94 miles per hour. so let's take a look at the latest update here on the radar as we go over to the big monitor. you will be able to see that we do have the big circulation spinning here to the northwest at about 6 miles an hour, i believe -- actually, 8 mile per hour. so it's a little bit faster than how you would walk down the street, but it's this painful approach to south florida that is causing all the problems. it's the wind, it's the surge. so let's break it down for you. chi west, you are in the thick of it right now, 100 to 125 mile
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an hour winds. the storm surge 5 to 10 feet. they're seeing that now. >> there's very little on the florida keys that is above 10 feet over sea level including u.s. 1. >> that's right. that's why they wanted to get everybody out of there. right now if you're stranded emergency crews probably can't get to you at the moment. >> that's right. >> the next high tide is at 2:15, that's when the wind is coming in out of the north and west. usually a northwest wind would be okay. >> right. >> but since you have the gulf here, the water will come piling back. we're seeing problems on the east coast of florida as well. we've seen problems with the tide rising there in the miami area. your high tide is at 12:26. while the path doesn't bring catastrophic flooding in, it certainly brings somewhat of a surge and we know on those clear sunny days in miami the storm conditions can flood. meanwhile, up the west coast, this is the next concern and the wild card here. is how much does this storm move inland or does it ride right along the coast? i've seen mixed solutions on this, i've seen some that go
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inland, some that stay offshore. the models have done an awful job with this storm in terms of the exact track. >> right. we generally know where it's going but there are three options, if it goes a little east and goes above pinellas and above tampa this is a population area that floods very quickly. if it goes off course all of this area getting a lot of wind but we could have dodged the worst of it if it stays offshore. >> it's the cone that you want to focus on. that's what got some people in trouble earlier on in the weekend, it's the cone. it could be anywhere in this blob and that is where we will see the catastrophic impacts either way there's no easy way out of this. >> right. >> it looks like a lot of water piling up and hopefully that solution doesn't happen. that's a category 3 off of tampa coming up here later tonight and early tomorrow morning. >> we are talking about 100, 115 mile per hour winds. i think it's important, thank you, steve, to remember you don't have to have winds near that level to cause destruction,
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not only wind destruction, but storm surges and when you are in the miami area in southeast florida you're talking about flooding streets. mariano has seen that because she lives there. there's water that comes up through the storm grates in miami. you are in miami beach right now. thankfully it is empty all around you. what's the situation, mariana? >> reporter: a very delicate situation. worsening by the minute because the winds really picking up here, that storm surge, the sea is about a quarter mile in front of me right now and you're starting to see that water come in pretty quickly. these streets, no doubt, will flood in the next couple of hours, if not days. i just want you to look at this lamp post behind me, i don't know if our cameraman can come this far. this was wobbling a little bit ago, it just went down. you can just see how the signage is moving around me. we've seen toppled trees,
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toppled power lines. now is when you start to get that debris flying around that could be potentially deadly for people walking around here. all this time we've been talking about the storm moving west and people here thinking, you know, we dodged a bullet, we might be out and about. we saw actually one person walking around today, one other car driving around. not what first responders want to see. also, we spoke to the miami beach commissioner who told us that miami beach right now 60% of its power grid totally out. 95% of power lines are also above street level, so you start to see those shaky power lines also can be potentially deadly for anybody walking around at this hour. so the next couple of hours here are going to be really critical in places like miami beach, a barrier island with a mandatory evacuation order, people should not be driving around, should not be walking around because it is really worsening by the minute. i just want to pan over to my left here.
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just look at this street, it's a ghost town, but it's almost like out of a horror movie. i want you to look at how the palm trees -- >> wow. >> -- are moving. it looks like they could go down. i mean, just look at this one behind me driving down the street. here in miami beach we saw a tree that there are went down but we're starting to see [ inaudible ] -- and even power lines above me right now street signs very wobbly, the wind has picked up, and again, you have the atlantic ocean about a quarter mile from where i'm standing so you get a lot of sand. those wind and those wind gusts when governor rick scott talks about that deadly storm surge this is one of the places where you are going to feel it the most. >> mariana, turn around over your right shoulder at that building that's been boarded up there. are there awnings coming off? there's something that seems to be coming off of that building behind you. >> reporter: yes, it is, in
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fact, an awning, a brown/beige awning that has already been ripped from the wall, that is the tgi fridays that has been boarded up, but already, again, there's structures that aren't really -- really nailed and strong are likely to come down because the wind is just picking up, getting worse by the anyone. it's almost hard to stand here and our cameraman is doing an amazing job. we're bringing you these images live as these conditions worsen and we start to see the wrath of irma barreling here towards [ inaudible ] -- >> mariana, note to our producers, we are going to have to send a fatter reporter in next time, you are a little light for these winds. this is, just to be clear, these are the people in miami beach and miami who were saying we've dodged this storm. what you're not dodging in miami, you're getting a lot of
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wind and i need you to be careful you don't get fit by something that's flying but what you are not dodging is the idea that there is rain and those areas do flood and you are on a barrier island. do you have a way off of that because if those water levels keep on rising those streets around you are going to flood. >> reporter: they are going to flood. as you say, i've lived here for a couple years, these streets flood with heavy rainfall. that is one of the biggest problems here in miami beach, that you're going to have. we're trying to stay as mobile as we are to not get stuck here, but a lot of people did not evacuate when they learned that there wasn't going to be a direct hit to miami beach so they're here and they are going to have to deal with that flooding. they've also placed temporary pumps here in the beach, we covered that part of the story yesterday. this is their first hurricane test. so again, officials have sort of taken precautions to avoid the flooding and some of that storm surge, but this is really --
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they're really facing -- facing an incredible threat right now with this category 4 hurricane. even though it's not going to be a direct hit right now you're still getting tropical storm winds, hurricane strength winds. we've been talking to officers throughout the past couple days in miami, they've told us when the winds reach 40 miles per hour they can't be out on the streets patrolling these streets anymore. i just heard some debris flying around. it's the awning you were referring to. >> it's gone. >> reporter: already gone. ripped from the wall behind me. i'm going to take shelter because i don't know where that's going to fly to right now. >> you have to be careful because if these things catch air -- look, i'm going to keep your camera shot up, you do what you need to do, but i want to keep your camera shot up while i go to kerry sanders. before i do that i want to go over here and show you what's going on where mariana is, she's on miami beach right here. the problem is it is solidly in a band. they're considered bands but look at that, there's no break in that band where mariana is.
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the winds are not going to decrease where she is. go up there a little bit, it's not the worst of it, there are yellows and oranges, but you're getting pretty steady wind where she is. let's go over to kerry, naples, florida. this is the side of the storm that's going to be more serious than what you just saw with mariana. kerry is standing by there. you're getting some rain, you are not getting blown away the way mariana is, although i won't tell any secrets, kerry, but you and i are never going to get blown the way mariana is. >> reporter: it's tough to stand in those winds. she's probably 150 miles as the crow flies from where we are and, you know, the storm from side to side in some points is about 400 miles. so we know it's coming and by seeing mariana's attempt to stand in that and give us an incredible report we are getting an indication, again, from that side of the storm what's going to be coming here. the pier here, everything looks fine, the gulf of mexico very calm.
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it was in 1960 when hurricane donna came through that the pier was taken out. my grandmother who lived right up the road used to have me over to tell me stories about surviving hurricane donna and now people are thinking about surviving irma. the ability of people to survive is better but also the amount of development is so much more than from the 1960s. you can see the homes that are right here, as you look at some of the homes you might be confused because these arings mas and say to yourself, well, i see some shutters down, but in some cases i don't see any shutters. why? that is because the homes have what are called impact glass and it's like bulletproof glass. because when the storm picks up and when we start seeing 130 or maybe even greater winds here, the trees that you had up here, you can see they've all been sort of trimmed back. the coconuts can coconuts go airborne and if it hits a window it can take it out, but the impact glass is designed to
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withstand a strike like that. we are concerned mostly in naples about the storm surge because the timing of this event is irma, should be passing through here at around 2:00 today. high tide is at 4:00 today. it's the backside of irma that will push the water up. so it will be high tide with the winds pushing up what we call the storm surge, predicted to be 10 to 15 feet. that means the water rushes in here, goes through these homes and goes blocks upon blocks inland. collier county here which is part of naples -- or naples which is part of collier county has already pulled its emergency personnel off the roads. at 7:00 today they said, do you know what, we're done. anybody dials, you are not getting help, don't dial 911. we have told you in advance this would happen. the one shelter in collier county is at capacity, but they're doing fine. i got a report just a short time
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ago that everybody there is kind of consoling one another and electricity is still on. so people can at least watch and see mariana, see what they see here in their own community because that's one of the greatest things that goes on in a situation like this, the curiosity of what's going on outdoors. as i will step out we will see the picture and let the people look along with everybody else. this is what's happening now and what's going to happen later is going to be ugly. >> we will stay close with you, kerry. we have kerry sanders there, we have mariana atencio in miami beach. let's go over to steve sass ian look. >> this is the core of the eye, this is the northern eyewall. landfall is probably going to happen in the next couple of minutes. all the water is coming in from this direction right now. where kerry was up in naples you're seeing the wind come in from the land. >> right. >> but the problem is that after this eye passes up through north
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of naples the wind is going to come in out of the gulf direction here and let me point that out for you here, it's going to be coming in off the gulf. >> right. >> so when the eye moves north that's within his conditions will go downhill the worst at the storm surge. >> they're getting wind this way, then they are going to get wind and water from this side. again, i will remind you the florida keys are somewhere between 0 and 10 feet above sea level. let's go to james dix, he is the owner of the establishment called the smallest bar in key west. jd, where are you right now? >> currently i am at the marriott beach side in key west, about the third floor in a beach front room. >> you are on the third floor. so how much -- >> yeah, i'm on the third floor which was the top floor. >> okay. >> there was actually a spiral staircase outside on my balcony that takes you up to the roof and that metal spiral staircase
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which is heavy stainless steel is just shaking. >> wow. >> as are the impact glass sliding doors and water is coming in the bottom of those of course because the winds and the rain is pounding against them. seriously. >> all right. so you are high enough -- if you're looking at let's call it a 15 foot storm surge there, you're high enough above that that that water will still be underneath you? >> yes. >> all right. how many people are there with you? >> there is nobody else in the room with me. somewhere the cat is here. >> why did you stay, james? >> pardon me? >> why did you stay? >> i stayed to secure the house and everything and after that i thought i was going to stay in the house, but then everybody kept telling me you are not staying in the house, are you? so i came across the street over
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here and got the last room available. >> all right. let's talk about -- i mean, when you say -- >> yesterday. >> -- are there a number of people staying at the hotel? >> yes, there are. there are a number of people staying here. there are a lot of first responders staying here, there is law enforcement staying in one of the buildings, a firefighter is staying in one of the buildings, there is military personnel here, special command and a lot of navy people also. >> what's the -- what are the conditions look like you to? as steve was saying we're probably very close to landfall probably in the middle keys around marathon, probably not to you yet, but very, very close to you in key west. are you feeling -- has it gotten substantially stronger in the last half an hour? >> yes, i would say it's gotten incredibly stronger in the last half an hour, although marathon is 50 miles away from here, the wind has certainly picked up,
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the water has certainly picked up and the room, as i said, is beginning to take on a little water. >> all right. j.d., stay safe, we will check in with you in a little while. just to give you a sense of where he is, he's here in key west, marathon is over here. we're actually going to see landfall around here between them. so this is about 15 miles east, probably going to be about 25 miles if we are not seeing it already it may just have happened. we will get more of an update shortly. gets go over here. phillip mena is standing by for us. last i checked you were in hollywood, now i think you are in ft. lauderdale, phillip. >> reporter: that's right. we are actually about six or seven miles inland. you would think that it would be a little less forceful and right now the winds mercifully died down for just a moment, but they were picking up and they will continue to pick up as we speak here. where i'm standing right now is a parking lot and just not too long ago, a few hours ago, you could see the pavement and now you can see how it's starting to pool up and flood and now these
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vehicles are in certain danger. again, we are, just to give you an idea, ft. lauderdale we're talking about key west being the target spot at this moment or very soon, we're 200 miles north of that and this is what we're feeling at this moment. this is how much flooding is going on right now. if you want to take a look over here to the left you can kind of see some of the debris here. a lot of these palm trees we've seen thin out throughout the night, just being pulled away, the branches pulled away by the extreme winds. it got so intense they had to start to pull some of the deputies from patrol in broward county as this was happening. let's take a full look around here. this vehicle, this was in pretty good shape when we got started earlier. the water has gone down a little bit, you can see where the water line was there a little bit. but again, there are a flooding conditions that can happen almost immediately in this situation. i will pull around here just a second. again, right before our eyes this was happening. it was really incredible to see
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how powerful all these winds and rain just dumping all of this rain on us. as we try to get that out of the way. you can see, again, these conditions very volatile and very sporadic. it picks up in intensity and picks up in the rainfall that gets dropped on t but the good news is we don't see anybody around anymore. there's that curfew and a lot of people are taking heed. who would want to be out here in this anyway. there are no vehicles that we have really seen out here and that's a good thing so they are not putting a burden on law enforcement and emergency responders at this moment. everybody at least they're taking heed of the advice and they are staying home and hunkered down. >> all right. phillip, stay safe out there. you are about four hours away from high tide. in addition to the rain and wind you're going to get more water over there. this is mariana. i think she is in too much wind for us to actually talk to her. let's see if we can put her mike up and listen to what she's got here. >> reporter: -- that is the biggest concern for residents of miami beach.
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the mayor of miami beach calling this a nuclear hurricane. if it's not going to be a direct hit people should not take this lightly, they should not be walking around, the next couple hours will be delicate for miami beach. i'm at the southern most part of miami beach. as this category 4 hurricane hits the keys when you are talking about a hurricane that's the size of the florida peninsula you're going to feel it here and it could potentially be very dangerous. matt and savannah. >> we were just listening into mariana in south beach. let's go to miguel almaguer, he is in florida city, florida. miguel, what's the situation where you are? >> the conditions here have been deteriorating for the last about dozen hours or so and they continue to do so as we push forward during the morning here. i can tell you we got here yesterday before the storm had arrived and it really has intensified. we have strong bands of rain and strong bands of wind and you can
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see here some of these trees here are blowing from side to side, some of the power lines are also beginning to sag, we've seen transformers explode early this morning. the mayor tells us that very little of the city actually evacuated, that most of them are hunkering down in place. since we've gotten here we haven't seen much of the public, only about a dozen or so people out on the streets in the last 24 hours or so the mayor says the town here is hurricane hardened, they're used to hurricanes in this area, but they also warn that first responders will not be going door to door over the next several hours here because these conditions could be too dangerous for them to go out, they don't want first responders risking their lives. so the conditions as they continue to deteriorate here will likely become a bigger problem as more folks lose power, as more folks lose water out here. >> miguel, let's talk about what you're seeing in terms of flooding. what are the flooding conditions? where is the water in relation to where you are? >> we are about 8 to 10 miles away from shore so they are not
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really overly concerned about the storm surge, of course, that's an issue for those communities that are very close to the coast. here they are more worried about the wind and rain. specifically, though, the wind because it's coming in at such a high speed it's going to take down power lines, bring down poles, that's their big concern here. >> miguel, we will stay close to you as well. let's go to dave gonzales right now, he handles earnest hemingw hemingway's home in the florida keys. ea are you inside the home right now? >> you've got some kind of alarm going off there. are you inside the home in key west? all right. looks like we've lost him. he is there. by the way, ste steves so na sa were moments away from landfall.
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that looks like that has happened in key west. we were talking about marathon, it's about 50 miles east. i will ask my control room to put up a map so i can show you what just happened there. in a moment we will have that information for you. we will take a quick break but our live coverage of hurricane irma which is making landfall now in the florida keys continues right after this break.
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that's a weather channel reporter getting blown around trying to capture the sound of this wind. this is what they do at the weather channel. myself, i would have maybe stayed in the car for another minute or two. so that's the scenes that you're getting in florida right now. for those people who thought that florida has missed anything, it has not. there has been a whole lot of
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this blowing around. we saw mariana atencio in miami beach getting blown around. this is a serious, serious storm. up in ft. lauderdale the winds have not reached those levels. let's go to jo ling kent. she's standing by for us in ft. lauderdale. jo ling, what have you got? >> reporter: we have water rising here. we are in a lower lying area of ft. lauderdale but the water is coming up, it's gathering in these lower lying areas. let's go back here, i'm going to show you what's happening on the streets here. broward county is not in the path of the eye of the storm as you know, but there is a serious curfew in place here. the idea is to make sure that first responders do not have to answer calls of emergencies as these winds continue to pick up. what we see here, though, is we have a downed tree, i will take you over here, that has just come down here, you can see the branches falling here. what we see is this is creating problems not just for this area, but we've also got power outages, about 100 some plus
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people in broward county do not have power. and we also know that in miami-dade county over 200,000 people do not have power. this is part of the reason why. we were just on the "today" show earlier -- be careful, caesar, it's mushy -- we saw a transformer explode in front of us and saw some buildings lose power here. the street here, which is normally pretty busy thoroughfare is completely isolated, no one is out here because of that curfew. this went into place 4:00 p.m. yesterday as the winds and the rain picked up here. but we can go back across the street and you can see palm fronds coming down. they're usually able to sustain some pretty sire yus wind here, but they've also come down and signs are getting pushed around here a little bit. the residents are glad to be in shelter, they were glad they were in the eye of the storm because they took extra precautions and now they are safe from these outer bands that are hitting the ft. lauderdale area, ali. >> jo ling kent in ft.
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lauderdale. we will come back to you in a little while. let's go to sam champion. where are you standing outside now? >> reporter: we are in miami proper. we are very close to the airport. and the rain bands that you saw from mariana are swinging across the town of miami. we are blocked by a strong building on this side. what you're seeing that i'm in right now is much less than what's going on out there right now. we have had the trees go by, our power outage count has been at about 600,000 most recently. i have to tell you one of the most disturbing things that i've heard so far coming out of north miami beach, about 40 minutes, 45 minutes ago we had a tornado warning that was issued for north miami beach and that was ma making it's way toward aventura. they said 80 miles an hour was the way the national weather service had issued that morning.
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what's troubling is already the winds have reached the cat doer that the first responders can't go out. we are already at 45 mile an hour study winds of gusts up to 60 miles per hour. first responders weren't going out those live power lines are still down on those streets. so wherever these wind gusts have picked up and taken those power lines down or blown something and the power is out, they haven't and won't be able to get people there to repair them. so it's one of the reasons why we really have to tell people who are in the rain and winds right now, whether it's the keys, miami-dade, a little bit north of the broward county or palm beach or any of those areas all the way across the street, if you've got wind and rain and you've got power outages do not leave your home. don't. those live power lines are down on the street and they will stay there until these winds die down enough that first responders can get out. >> sam, i'm looking at the maps here. how much worse does it get in miami? at the moment i'm seeing variable winds where you are,
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it's gusting and stopping. you're still going to get more sustained winds in a little while and i think you guys hit tie tide there in four hours. >> reporter: yeah, right around the noontime we will get into those high tides and a lot of some of these areas from the northern keys around into miami. so we will be watching that surge very carefully then. but the other thing, ali, yeah -- okay, so see where the eye is now on the keys, that's the impact there. now, as that starts to move up, and it's a slow mover now so this is going to take all day to get past south florida really. so this is an all day event and as we go into the hours of the day and certainly by noon, certainly by 2:00 and 3:00 we will get into the stronger wind field. so what we're getting in gusts right now we will get in a pretty steady form. so we're going to get very high tropical storm force winds. the winds that you see people fighting and having difficulty standing in in those live shots, those are tropical storm form gusts, we haven't gotten to that 75, 77 mile per hour wind get
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yet. all the trees that are down, all the debris flying around you are still not seeing from the shots you've seen in miami and ft. lauderdale we haven't been seeing those hurricane force winds just yet. we will later on this afternoon. especially in gusts as those bands come through. again, more importantly what i have to say, ali, is there will be tornadoes and we have already had warnings this morning, there will be more throughout the day. it's not just the water along the shore and the flooding from the heavy rain and the winds, but those tornadoes popping up mean stay inside, hunker down until this passes and it's all day, ali. >> i have steve sosna here hearing you talk about the winds pulled up our wind map right now is showing us where you are in the 60 mile per hour range, it's going to get a lot heavier than that. >> m is a, right down to your south every blades park is gusting 78 mile per hour, so that's not even with the eyew l eyewall, that's with that next rain band coming up. i would expect probably within the next half hour to hour you are going to start to really see those gusts maybe 60, 70 mile per hour. >> yeah. >> definitely.
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and that's going to be -- so the damage that we've seen so far just double down as we move into the next few hours. i mean, you know, it's tempting to think, oh, we are in the storm right now but we're really not. i will tell you who is right now is all those keys. so very important for everybody to be watching, that eye because it just missed -- the eyewall seems on radar to have just missed key west, just came in a little bit east of key west, but big pine key, all those areas definitely took the eye. so we will have to be watching where that eye continues to go. now, this is where i'm talking about, ali, it comes in these gusts, it comes in waves and i'm telling you there is -- there is a building that is right there that is blocking this for me. so what you're seeing that's going on hyped me is nothing compared to that straight line effect that you're getting from the ocean, from the beach all the way through miami and even enhance it in what's going on in brickel and downtown miami when
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you're sandwiched in between those buildings and this wind is forced to funnel in between them. there will be big damage in miami. >> we are looking at the winds that you are in. these are not anywhere close to the strongest winds that they are going to see right now. this is the band that is -- that you're in. all right, sam, stand by. i want to go just a little north of you, josé lopez is riding out the storm in a miami high-rise that has turned into inadvertently a shelter. he was there from california, he went there and he ended up with his late parents' closest friends who are elderly and decided not to leave. josé, yesterday when we spoke you said you still had power, you had a lot of food and a lot of water and it was getting bad. what's the situation now? >> hey, ali. it's gotten worse. we just lost power about 15 minutes ago and we were under that tornado alert. i got a signal on my phone. i got them up out of bed and we all went out into the hallway
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and we've been taking shelter there. i came up to my apartment to make sure that everything was okay up here on the 14th floor. as soon as i stepped off the elevator the power went out. so i'm kind of like stuck here because the stairwells in this building are outside, they run along the edges of the four corners of this building. >> all right. let's talk about the building you are in. certainly since hurricane andrew buildings around there in the '90s and beyond have become -- they've been fortified, they are raised off of the ground, they have this hurricane proof windows that can take something hitting it at 150 miles an hour, something more than wind. are you in a fortified building? is your building strong? >> yes, it is. we have a 20 foot high sea wall that runs along the rear of the building facing the beach. that's where the pool is, and then there is a parking structure underneath it. and there are shelters on the
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pool deck level. there are two big conference rooms. that's what's been turned into a elt shr. we never went down there because with these folks and their wheelchairs i didn't want to take the risk of going down there and losing all power completely. we lost power but we still have power in the hallways and there's one elevator running. >> when you say it's a shelter, explain it to me because if it's on the pool deck i assume that means it's raised from the ground, not at sea level, typically these things are three, four, five, six, seven stories sometimes above sea level. what's shelter-y about it? >> there are no exterior -- there's one room that's about 100 feet by 100 feet it's a conference room with a stage, they hold parties down there and stuff like that. there are no windows. there is a kitchen and that's it. they have a medic down there. it's on the third floor which means it's above the -- it's
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above the storm wall. so it would be a 30 foot storm surge for the water to get into that floor. >> and that is something that typically has happened with new buildings in southeast florida, they've got storm walls coming off the beach, they have vegetation that has to be there. you will often see these shots like the one in front of you in miami where there's reg tags between the buildings and beach and that vegetation at least in some small way is supposed to help, but obviously with the swells that we're expecting to see right now that won't be the case. josé, i don't know if you have had a chance to look out over the ocean. are you seeing higher sea levels? >> yes, i am. the beach is about more than halfway consumed by the ocean from what it normally s it's a pretty deep beach. let me see if i can look out of my bedroom here. hold on. hold on one second.
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there's still -- there's still about 60 feet of sand between dunes and the actual water line. >> okay. >> i'm looking down at collins avenue, i see some palm fronds, i don't see any flooding or anything like that. >> all right. we're going to keep close to you. by the way, how are your parents' friends who you are with who you are taking care of? are they doing okay? >> they're very agitated. >> yeah. >> they're very, very agitated and they didn't want me to -- i slept on their couch last night because they didn't want me to leave them. >> yeah. >> so that's exactly what i did. so i've gotten maybe an hour and a half of sleep all night. >> josé, you went there to pay homage to your mother whose ashes you had scattered in the waters just below that building when you swam out there a year ago and you were worried that you weren't going to memorialize her. i think it's share to say you're memorializing your mother very well taking care of your parents' two closest friends. thank you very much, josé.
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you stay in touch with us, if you see any changes that we need to know about please give us a call. everything you're telling us we're sending out there so that other people following this across the nation can keep their relatives in florida apprised of including because some of them like you have said lost power. we will talk to josé again fairly shortly. with us now is major hector lavatt with the miami-dade police department. what's the situation where you are? >> well, the situation here in miami-dade county is continuing to deteriorate. we have obviously winds that are gusting up to 70 miles an hour, we are under a tornado watch, some areas are under a tornado warning. we've seen the tornadoes already hitting some of the areas, especially yesterday we saw areas with trees down on homes and fences broken and live wires down. we are just waiting to see what the level is going to be of
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concern when this passes, but urging everybody to stay inside, to not let curiosity get the best of them. this is still very dangerous and the weather is volatile. >> we were just measuring winds around your area and it was -- we are in the 50 mile an hour range. you can't go out and help people in this kind of wind. >> no, in this type of weather our officers have to take shelter. like i mentioned before, there is debris that's flying around, there's live wires, but we do have our officers disbursed at our district stations which are all different locations throughout dade county. so as soon as it is safe we will be able to reach most people and make an assessment and start helping clear some of that debris so that we can traverse through the roads of dade county. >> all right. what is your biggest concern right now in dade county? we're trying to get a handle on what's the most serious thing. projectiles from the wind, the
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storm surge, the flooding generally that you do get in dade county, what's worrying you the most right now? >> well, it's one of those that's, d, all of the above. >> yeah. >> we don't know what's going to be the worst part of it. definitely have some concerns with the storm surge on the eastern part of the county. we've already gotten reports of the debris and the live wires and things falling down and stuff like that, and then these wind gusts, i mean, it will be slow in a moment and then you will get a major wind gust blowing through at any moment. like i said, it's very volatile, it's unpredictable. best thing for everybody to do right now is remain under shelter, do not go outside, do not fall into a false sense of security and just wait it out. >> all right. major, thanks very much for everything that you are doing. please wait it out, please be safe because we are going to need you and your colleagues out there when this storm passes, but for those people in miami, in miami beach, in ft.
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lauderdale, in hallandale, in hollywood, palm beach, the worst of this is not with you yet. the worst of it is here in key west. looks like it's just made landfall about 30 miles east of key west. we are waiting for confirmation on that. you all the way here in miami and those areas, you're getting steady wind but it's not the worst of it yet. let's take a look at this, these are the winds blowing in florida city, you can see these palm trees, you can see the sort of wind we've got there. we will continue to cover all of this with our reporters out there. you're watching msnbc. our coverage of hurricane irma continues right after this.
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you're watching live nonstop coverage on msnbc of hurricane irma. that's mariana atencio in miami beach. by the way, thank you for those of you who have expressed your concern for the safety of mariana and our other reporters.
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just to let you know, while it doesn't look like it, and i've covered many of these in the field, about seven hurricanes, we have -- we know how to take precautions. we know -- you heard sam champion saying for all the wind he was in there was a big wall next to him so he was only getting residual wind. you saw kerry sanders talking about coconuts that could become missiles but we know where to stand upwind and downwind. there is some danger involved in this, there is no question, but it is what we do for a living and there's none better than mariana atencio to be doing what she's doing. every time she is not on tv, trusty, there is an executive producer, somebody around there who is making sure that these reporters are staying safe. i don't take back what i said that mariana is one of the lighter reporters we have. i only mean in physical stature, but she is doing a really good job on that. let's go to james list kano, a miami resident who was not able to evacuate due to his newborn who has medical problems. james, where are you right now and where is your family?
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>> right now we are in miami lakes in a hotel. >> all right. and what's the situation for you? >> right now the weather is looking pretty bad. i originally had every intention of evacuating, but my daughter was born a week ago and while we were in the hospital we saw the storm coming and we saw how intense it was, but she was born jaundiced and the doctors told us that they had to keep a close eye on her bilirubin count, so we had to make daily follow-up appointments throughout the week. by the tame that her condition improved it was late in the week already, the traffic -- the highways were completely jam packed, there was no gas to be found, so at that point i had to make a decision, do i, you know, take my family, my newborn, my other two children, my wife out on the road and run the risk of being stranded out there or, you know, having to sleep in a rest stop, which i understand a lot of people had to do, or do i find fortified structure here and try to ride it out. >> first of all, congratulations on the birth of your daughter.
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>> thank you. >> her health is good now? >> yeah, she's much better now. >> excellent. it's going to be a good story for her for the rest of her life. >> absolutely. >> tell me now what your situation s you've got enough food, you have some ability to keep your family going for a few days? >> yeah, absolutely. i stocked up on food, on water, i bought more formula than anyone can possibly imagine, so we're good. we're good on supplies and whatnot. i was prepared in time for the power to go out. i wanted to make sure i was in a safe structure with a good roof and whatnot. >> what are you seeing around you right now? can you get a sense of how bad it is? >> yeah, i'm staying far enough away from these windows, but it's bad outside. the weather is getting increasingly more chaotic, you can hear the wind whistling along the building and it's getting pretty bad out there. >> are you in a post 1992 structure or something that's been fortified since then.
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>> yes. absolutely. >> you have proper windows and it could flood. what level are you on? >> i'm on the second floor. >> all right. so you should be -- you should be safe, but you want to watch out, steve, in miami beach, miami we are looking at a storm surge if it gets in of under 10 feet at this point? >> yes, under 10 feet in miami. the bigger concern right now is in some of the high-rises the weather service in miami warning that some of the gusts -- because remember when you go up with height the gusts are going to be stronger. we're seeing potentially 100 mile per hour gusts already right now in miami in some of those high-rises you don't want to be near the glass. >> james, your windows if they are up to code should be good for almost 150 when they build those so in case something hits the window they will take a 2-by-4 and test it by slamming it in. james, i'm so happy that your daughter has recovered and, you know, when we sit here and say why did people stay, your reason is compelling. that you had a daughter who was ill, a newborn, and getting
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stuck at a rest stop probably wouldn't be an ideal situation so we pray for you and we're thinking about you and i'd like to stay in touch with you over the course of the next few hours as things worsen in your area. you're right to stay away from those windows, now.away from the windows, though. what are you looking at, steve? >> it is making landfall as we speak. the scary part about this is the winds will go calm. and then as the center moves over the gulf the temperature will drop. when the eye passes, that water will come quickly back in. >> hold on for a second, marianna, can you hear us?
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>> yes, i'm here and i want to stabilize our camera. this is miami beach at the moment. conditions have worsened by the minute. you see a lamp that just went down over here. street sign that's have gone down -- >> the shot went down, don't worry about that, that stuff happens fairly frequently in these hurricanes. we'll lose thing things, our reporters know what they're doing and they're working very hard out there. they know how to stay safe. >> i'm here, this is miami beach. the hurricane is almost here in florida. i want you to look at how some of the palm trees are moving. we're seeing tree that's have toppled. i don't know if you can make out a tree here over my left-hand
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shoulder, relatively large, all right fell, about a quarter mile away from the beach, you're starting to see that gusts of water and wind coming in and that is why miami beach is under threat of storm surge and also you're going to get a lot of flooding in these streets behind me right now. we have seen the lamps and street signs. the awning that fell, and a homeless man walking around a little while ago. we called the authorities to report there is someone that needs help, but miami beach, a place with a relative large homeless population is a primary concern for first responders. as conditions worsen here, it becomes incredibly difficult for them to come out and rescue these people. the next couple hours will be really crucial and life or death for many people here.
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hopefully everyone is saying safe. the debris flying around and the storm surge is what is really dangerous. >> i have miami beach city commissioner, ricky arioli. they called in the fact, i saw her camera focused on a homeless person in front of the tgif. that is an issue. how have you get with that? >> we have, for the past week been out there actively with our homeless outreach department making sure they have shelter and will be cared for during hurricane ir ma and i would say the vast majority of them cooperated and are in shelters. unfortunately there might be some out there who for whatever reason declined our offer for
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help and our thoughts and prayers are with them that they're finding shelter right now. we spent the past week going in to make sure they had shelters and helped them evacuation. >> where are you right now and what's the situation as you see it? >> i'm at city hall right now myself and some other folks spent the evening here. the kinds really kicked up here. the winds are outside of our win koe. strong, strong winds, and we're going to ride it out. >> tell me, i noticed when i spoke to your mayor, your city hall is a fortified structure. in fact you have a lot of fortified structures.
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were code is about being able to withstand hurricanes. tell me about the people that say i have hurricane safe windows. what does that mean? >> myself, the city mayor, city manager, we all spent might here at city hall. this is a very strong fortified structure, you don't feel anything but you look out and see all hell breaking loose. you can barely hear the wind inside. it is a very, very solid structure. hopefully the buildings that are all up to code are experiencing the same thing we are. and we're in a safe space right now. >> what do you expect to happen now? we're looking at these pictures, the palm trees, they're more resilient than trees not meant to bend and sway, but there are
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trees and street poles coming down, what's your bingest danger? >> certainly with wind speeds like this is flying debris. we are across the street from our convention center which is undergoing a massive renovation right now. we secured the structure, and i have been looking at it the past couple hours, and i'm happy to say nothing has been flying out of the convention center. these palm trees are amazing. they bend but don't break. certainly one of the most dangerous is flying debris, the falling structures. >> you don't have the worst of it yet, you're still many, many hours away from it, and you're a few hours away from high tide that will cause more flooding, we'll come back to you. the city commissioner for miami
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beach. we're watching and we're going to be watching with you as conditions, there is kerry's picture. i appreciate the nice clean shot from his camera. we will stand by. we have a gas station here and i'm just going to ask my control room to let me know what we are looking at. we're going to get new numbers at 8:00 for this hurricane. you can see an eye that has been moving onland to key west. it looks to be about 30 miles east ofkey west where it was hit. we thought landfall might be at fair on this. the hurricane kept shifting west and west and there was some danger it would come aboard at key best. the eyewall is now here. we're waiting for the official
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confirmation that it made landfall there. we don't have that, but we believe based on time it should have right now. it's not the most relevant thing in the world if it hit marathon or key west, because all of the area will get these winds, when the eye wall, the edge of the eye, once it passes over you, it is remarkable calm. it is still for awhile until the entire eye passed over and then the place hit gets hit again from winds on the other side. places that did not flood completely get it on the other slid side. all of this goes fromkey west all of the way up there and further. it is about ten feet above sea
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level. there will be no road or ability to travel up and down here. you have seen officials have moved to key west, a gentleman holed up in a hotel there, or they have gone up this way to key largo, florida city, homestead, or places like that into mainland florida. where things are not going to be submerged. they will not be as bad. for miami beach over here, they are still not getting the worst of the winds that were there. we talked to sam champion. might be in the 50 to 58 miles per hour winds. for those people in miami or the southeast coast of florida, in fact let me go to steve and talk about this. let me just play this for you.
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>> these winds are tropical storm force. 40 to 50 miles per hour, gusting to 70 miles per hour. >> starting to feel the wrath of this hurricane here in miami beach as it is moving forward the keys. right here in florida. >> if you're getting close to that storm surge, i'm really concerned for you. >> it looks like the water came up couple feet since last night, it's still not over the dock. you have the seawall, and then a dock where boats can pull out. >> look all right here? is it okay here? >> we're going to lose a lot of power. we do have a lot of resources already in orlando. good morning, thank you for being here for our special coverage of hurricane irma. we're tracking the storm that florida's governor is calling the most catastrophic to h


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