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giftedviz.com December 17, 2018


Hurricane Michael is a monster storm and an unnatural disaster

11 October 2018, 12:49 | Ross Houston

NOAA via AFP Getty Images Hurricane Michael closed in on Florida's Gulf Coast on Wednesday

09:00 UTC shows Hurricane Michael off the US Gulf Coast.- Hurricane Michael closed in on Florida's Gulf Coast

Hurricane center Director Ken Graham said on Facebook that Michael would be the worst storm in recorded history to hit the Panhandle.

Michael is moving north at 13 mph, now 90 miles southwest of Panama City.

The hurricane made landfall on the Florida Panhandle as a Category 4 storm.

More than 375,000 people up and down the Gulf Coast were warned to evacuate, and the hurricane's leading edge sent storm surge into neighbourhoods as it approached.

At the time, the then-tropical-storm wasn't expected to achieve its current Category 4 status, but now that it's here, it's time to batten down the hatches. "Storm surge can occur before, during, or after the center of a storm passes through an area".

Four days later, "it's one for the record books", said Kerry Emanuel, an atmospheric scientist with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Brock Long, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), said early evacuation efforts in the area were slow.

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"Going back through records to 1851 we can't find another Cat 4 in this area, so this is unfortunately a historical and incredibly unsafe and life-threatening situation", he said. "Tropical storm-force winds continue over central and southern Georgia, and are spreading across the coast of southeastern Georgia", the Miami-based weather forecaster said.

Moist air, warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico, and ideal wind patterns supercharged Hurricane Michael in the hours before it smacked Florida's Panhandle. "This is going to have structure-damaging winds along the coast and hurricane force winds inland".

Jason Phipps looks through his family's roofless apartment after Hurricane Michael made landfall in Panama City, Fla. It is the fourth strongest on record, and nothing this ferocious has ever hit the Panhandle. That's a 72 per cent increase in wind speed in less than 33 hours.

On the forecast track, the eye of Michael is expected to move ashore over the Florida Panhandle later today near Panama City, move northeastward across the southeastern USA tonight and Thursday, and then move off the Mid-Atlantic coast away from the US on Friday. A unsafe storm surge continued along the coastal Florida panhandle; a National Ocean Service station in Apalachicola was reporting 5 feet of water above the ground level. A National Ocean Service water level station at Apalachicola recently reported over 6.5 feet of inundation above ground level, according to the Hurricane Center.

The governor didn't wait for damage assessments before seeking federal assistance from President Donald Trump for 14 counties: Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Hamilton, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Suwannee, Taylor and Wakulla.

"A potentially catastrophic event is developing", the National Weather Service forecast office serving the Tallahassee area wrote.

More than 300,000 homes and businesses have been affected by power outages in Florida. It gradually slowed to a sluggish pace of 5 miles per hour. Wind damage was also evident.



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