One dead as monstrous Hurricane Michael tears into Florida

11 October, 2018, 23:02 | Author: Grady Montgomery

As the destructive forces of Hurricane Michael were set to make landfall on the Florida Panhandle Wednesday, the astronauts aboard the International Space Station were able to capture breathtaking video of the storm.

Hurricane Michael also stands out because of its late arrival.

There is "one hurricane-related fatality", Olivia Smith, public information officer for the Gadsden County Board of County Commissioners, said.

Michael's conditions are similar to those of Hurricane Harvey, which devastated Texas past year as a Category 4 storm that packed 130 miles per hour winds and left 68 people dead.

Residents who are still in Florida are being battered by Hurricane Michael, which made landfall Wednesday afternoon. "They said it grew into a monster".

"We are catching some hell", Timothy Thomas, who rode out the storm with his wife in their home in Panama City Beach, Florida, told the Associated Press news agency. Rescue crews that were responding to the emergency failed to arrive in time to pull him out alive due to roads being blocked by fallen power lines.

Michael was forecast to bring a storm surge up to 14 feet (4.3 metres) in some areas. Michael's measurement indicates it's more intense than Hurricane Andrew, which hit Florida in 1992 with a pressure of 922 millibars, and Hurricane Katrina, which devastated New Orleans in 2005 when it hit with a pressure of 920 millibars.

The risk of life-threatening storm surge, flooding rains, and unsafe winds are increasing for the northeastern Gulf Coast.

The hurricane is packing devastating winds as high as 150 miles per hour, and is the most powerful storm in recorded history for this part of the Florida coast. She said she could smell the pine from snapped tree branches.

Megan Williams, left, and roommate Kaylee O'Brian take belongings from their destroyed home after several trees fell on the house during Hurricane Michael in Panama City, Fla., Oct. 10, 2018.

"This storm can kill you", Governor Rick Scott has warned.

Michael is forecast to be downgraded to a tropical storm by Thursday morning and then to a remnant low pressure area as it passes about 150 miles south of Cape Cod on Friday morning.

Residents of the neighboring state of Georgia should also expect to be heavily impacted by the storm, the FEMA head said. "Do not risk your life, leave NOW if you were told to do so", it said. It is the fourth strongest on record, and nothing this ferocious has ever hit the Panhandle.

After landfall in Florida, Michael's strong winds and heavy rains will thrash Georgia and the Carolinas next, including areas that got a soaking last month from Hurricane Florence.

President Donald Trump declared a state of emergency for all of Florida, freeing up federal assistance to supplement state and local disaster responses. Michael was the third most powerful hurricane to hit the US mainland, based on barometric pressure.

As the hurricane moves out of Florida, Scott warned that flash floods and tornadoes are still possibilities and said "the weather is still extremely unsafe".



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