Hurricane Maria, a Category 4 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, has become the strongest Puerto Rico landfalling hurricane since the Great Depression, lashing the island and the nearby Virgin Islands with destructive winds, flooding rain and storm surge.

The eye of Maria came ashore near the town of Yabucoa, Puerto Rico, around 6:15 a.m. AST Wednesday as a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 155 mph.

The eyewall of Maria continues to carve through Puerto Rico, including the island of Vieques. In advance of the eyewall, the National Weather Service issued a “extreme wind warnings” for several eastern Puerto Rico municipalities.

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