Tuesday, 23 April, 2019

300 miles of Florida coastline on hurricane alert

Satellite view of hurricane over Atlantic Ocean Enlarge The center of Hurricane Michael passed near the western tip of Cuba on Monday
Deanna Wagner | 10 October, 2018, 05:11

Hurricane Michael is expected to bring storm surges and heavy rainfall when it smashes into Florida midweek.

He added that it is predicted to be "the most destructive storm to hit the Florida panhandle in decades".

Hurricanes are violent storms that can bring devastation to coastal areas, threatening lives, homes and businesses.

Michael lashed western Cuba Monday with heavy rains and strong winds. As Michael nears landfall, we're sharing all you need to know about the impending storm. Hurricane force winds extend about 80 miles around the storm with tropical storm force winds spreading across almost 400 miles. The state emergency web site - which provides information on information on road closings, evacuation routes, power outages, flood zones and county shelter operations - had technical issues through Monday and as recently as Tuesday morning.

Storm surge warnings stretched from just north of Tampa to Walton County, west of Panama City.

"The center of Michael will continue to move over the southern Gulf of Mexico this morning, then move across the eastern Gulf of Mexico later today and tonight", the agency said.

Hurricane Michael is expected to hit the Florida panhandle as a major storm on Wednesday afternoon (Oct. 10) - and USA weather satellites are busy watching the storm to help meteorologists keep people safe.

The storm also is likely to dump prodigious amounts of rain over Florida, Alabama and Georgia as well as the Carolinas, which are still reeling from severe flooding last month in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. Residents in these areas should follow advice given by local officials, and keep tabs on live updates, which are available from CNN.

The governor activated 750 national guardsman for storm response on Monday, on top of the 500 activated the day before. "There are warnings for more than 300 miles of coastline".

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"You could see storm surge 10 to 12 miles inland", said National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham.

The storm's effects will be felt far from the eye of the hurricane. Because he owns two businesses in the area, Givens, who lives inland, said he was not evacuating. "There's nothing between us and this storm but warm water' and I think that's what terrifies us about the potential impacts". The storm was implicated in the deaths of 80 Floridians, according to the Associated Press - including residents at a nursing home. Residents also lined up to buy gas and groceries even as evacuations - both voluntary and mandatory - were expected to pick up the pace Tuesday.

After it makes landfall, the storm is predicted to pass into Georgia, where Gov. Nathan Deal on Tuesday issued a state of emergency covering 92 counties - almost the entire lower two-thirds of his state.

Earlier Tuesday, Scott stressed that time was running out for residents to prepare. "But don't let this storm catch you with your guard down".

Florida State University said its campuses in Tallahassee and Panama City will be closed from Tuesday to Friday.

"Families should take the opportunity today to make sure they have three days of food and water, as well as all needed medications", Governor Scott wrote on Twitter.

As the storm makes landfall in the Florida Panhandle or Big Bend area, it is expected to increase to near-Category-4 strength before weakening, the NHC said.

Eglin Air Force Base required only mission-essential personnel to report for duty Tuesday.

Rain chances stand at 60 percent in Orlando on Tuesday and Wednesday before jumping to 70 percent on Thursday.