Thousands in the Caribbean have already taken shelter from Hurricane Irma, evacuating or getting to higher ground as the flooding continues. But many chose to leave their home security cameras on to capture the action in real time.
Though the quality of many of these cameras is often poor — what do you expect? They’re filming a freaking Category 5 hurricane — and some streams end in a the camera malfunctioning as a result of the storm, the footage can give viewers a good sense of the kind of power Irma’s winds are packing.
In one grainy black and white livestream from Port de Saint Barthelemy, a webcam captures the 185 mph winds threatening to take out a palm tree by the ocean.
In this stream, which is actually being filmed by a Puerto Rico resident standing at a window inside his high-rise home, viewers can see waves knocking around docked boats and trees bending to the powerful winds.
“Oh my God, look at these winds,” the videographer can be heard saying as a baby cries in the background.
One brave videographer who appears to be outside as recently as 3 p.m. Eastern got a full view of what’s happening. In this stream, it’s difficult to hear over the sound of the roaring winds, and debris can be seen flying through the streets as cars drive away at the most intense points of the video.
On Facebook, one Grand Turk resident has left up a stream of the swaying trees
Though the storm is not expected to hit Florida until Sunday, some have already set plans to stream their views from where they are.
Ryan, a Twitch user from the Dade County area in Florida told Inverse he plans on streaming live on Sunday from his phone.
“This storm is probably going to change my life forever [so] I want my experience documented,” he said in a Twitter DM, adding that he is afraid Hurricane Irma will destroy his home.
His stream will be made available on his Twitch account on Sunday, he says.