Hurricane Irma 2 PM EST Update: Wind Gusts Up To 225 MPH

As of a 2 p.m. advisory from the Mational Hurricane Center in Miami, Hurricane Irma persisted as a "potentially catastrophic" Category 5 storm, packing maximum sustained winds of 185 mph. Wind gusts are also up to 225 mph. 

Irma was located about 50 miles east-southeast of St. Thomas, 140 miles east of San Juan, Puerto Rico, moving west-northwest at 16 mph.

All of Florida's peninsula continues to fall in the forecast cone. And though the cone continues to shift Irma more to the east, South Florida remains on high alert.

Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in all 67 counties of the state, to give local governments "ample time, resources and flexibility" to prepare for the storm. 

President Donald Trump has also approved a federal emergency declaration for the state ahead of the storm, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The effects of Irma could begin to be felt in South Florida as early as Friday

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