(Bloomberg) – Florida declared a state of emergency before a possible hurricane strike after Irma strengthened to become a Category 5 storm on its approach to the Caribbean.

Irma's maximum winds rose as high as 180 miles an hour (290 kilometers an hour), the U.S. National Hurricane Center said in an advisory on Tuesday. The storm is located about 270 miles east of the Caribbean island of Antigua and headed toward the Leeward Islands.

'Extremely dangerous Category 5 hurricane'

"Irma becomes an extremely dangerous Category 5 hurricane," the NHC said in the advisory. "Preparations should be rushed to completion in the hurricane warning area."

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