A picture shows rocks swept by strong waves onto a road in Le Carbet, on the French Caribbean island of Martinique, after it was hit by Hurricane Maria - Google image labelled for reuse

The winds of  Hurricane Maria felt like one of category 5 in some municipalities of Puerto Rico, although the phenomenon touched down as category 4.

The National Hurricane Center published the final report in which stands out among other information that in Caguas has received the largest amount of water with 37.90 inches of rain.

“It entered with winds of 155 miles per hour for Yabucoa, but for effects of how it felt – the difference between 4 and 5 is two miles – many areas of the island experienced category 5 bursts, especially in mountainous areas,” the meteorologist from the National Meteorology Service (SNM) Felix Castro said.

The report, which does not vary much from the preliminary issued by the NHC in November, summarizes the storm’s trajectory from before it entered the islandat 6:15 a.m. until it left at 2:00 p.m.

The new 48-page report details that the amount of rain left by María was extreme in a short period of time, with the largest water accumulation in Caguas with 37.90 inches and 27.82 in Villalba.

The discharge of the rivers on the island reached record breaking levels.

“The report mentions that the most severe flood was the La Plata River. It flooded areas that had not flooded before, “Castro said.

In addition, the document indicates that three tornadoes were observed by a hurricane hunter near the coast of Yabucoa, but have not been confirmed by the SNM.

The storm surge caused by Maria had a maximum of 6 to 9 feet just north of where it touched land, near the coast of Humacao, Naguabo and Ceiba.


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