Friday, 19 October, 2018

Monster Hurricane Michael brings 'unimaginable devastation' as it slams Florida

Hurricane Michael water vapor as it makes landfall on Oct. 10 2018 Hurricane Michael water vapor as it makes landfall on Oct. 10 2018
Elijah Vega | 11 October, 2018, 10:51

As Michael hit Panama City as a Category 4, storm chaser Dan Robinson caught video of the worst of it.

Hurricane Michael weakened to a Category 1 storm late Wednesday as it moved across south-central Georgia with maximum sustained winds of 75 miles per hour.

He said the storm would still have hurricane-force winds as it pushed through Florida into Georgia, and tropical storm-force winds when it reaches the Carolinas, which are still reeling from post-Florence flooding.

She said: "I'm anxious about my daughter and grandbaby".

A woman makes her way to an evacuation shelter in Tallahassee, Florida.

In Panama City, plywood and metal flew off the front of a Holiday Inn Express.

Michael is likely to dump heavy rain over Florida, Alabama, Virginia, Georgia, and the Carolinas.

Hurricane Michael's trail of devastation is starting to become apparent.

Hurricane Michael is closing in on the Florida Panhandle with potentially catastrophic winds of 150 miles per hour. While eyes in space watch the unsafe storm from above, cameras on the ground are tracking the hurricane's impending landfall for live internet viewing. Preliminary reports indicate the child, who authorities believe was 11 years old, died when something fell on a home but authorities have not been able to get to the home yet, said Travis Brooks, the county's emergency management director.

Michael battered the shoreline with sideways rain, powerful gusts and crashing waves, swamping streets and docks, flattening trees, stripped away leaves, shredding awnings and peeling away shingles.

At 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT), the center of the storm was a few miles northwest of Mexico Beach and about 20 miles (30 km) southeast of Panama City.

Dry dock destroyed in Panama City Beach Florida Oct. 10 2018
Dry dock destroyed in Panama City Beach Florida Oct. 10 2018

"This is total devastation", she told CNN.

The National Weather Service office in Tallahassee issued a dramatic appeal for people to comply with evacuation orders. "You know, that's hard", she said, choking back tears.

Residents and tourists were told to flee low-lying areas in at least 22 counties along the shore in Florida's Panhandle and adjacent Big Bend region.

"This situation has NEVER happened before", it said on Twitter.

Trump declared a state of emergency for the entire state of Florida, freeing up federal assistance to supplement state and local disaster responses.

General Terrence O'Shaughnessy, commander of North American Aerospace Defense Command, said some Florida residents may have been surprised by the rapid growth of the storm. Up to a foot of rainfall was forecast for some areas, still recovering from Hurricane Florence's flooding.

It made landfall on the coast as a Category 1 hurricane on September 14 and drenched some parts of the state with 101 centimeters of rain.

According to Climate Central, a scientific research organization, the coming decades are expected to bring hurricanes that intensify more rapidly, should there be no change in the rate of greenhouse gas emissions.

Scientists say global warming is responsible for more intense and more frequent extreme weather, such as storms, droughts, floods and fires.

A total of 453 flights had been cancelled on Wednesday across the country, with many occurring in the Florida area.

Hurricane Mitch reportedly killed about 19,000 people. A pine tree punched a hole in their roof and his ears even popped when the barometric pressure went lower.

Yao Ming joins China delegation in North Korea for basketball match
Kim committed to work toward "complete" denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in exchange for security guarantees from the US. The Vatican's priests were expelled by North Korea long ago and state-appointed laymen officiate services.

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