MARIA REGAINS CATEGORY 5 STRENGTH

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Recent reports from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that Maria has reintensified to category 5 status, with estimated maximum sustained winds of 160 mph (260 km/h).
The potential catastrophic hurricane is centered as of 5:10 a.m. AST about 65 miles (100 km) west-southwest of Guadeloupe and about 205 miles (325 km) southeast of St. Croix. Maria is moving toward the west-northwest near 9 mph (15 km/h), and this general motion is expected to continue through Wednesday. On the forecast track, the eye of Maria will move over the northeastern Caribbean Sea today, and approach the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico tonight and Wednesday. Some fluctuations in intensity are likely during the next day or two, but Maria is forecast to remain an extremely dangerous category 4 or 5 hurricane while it approaches the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.
An Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft is currently investigating Maria. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 30 miles (45 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles (205 km).

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