Historic Hurricane Michael hits Florida — WHAT'S HAPPENING

Gwen Vasquez
October 11, 2018

"We're seeing up to nine feet of inundation in parts of Apalachicola, Florida, and that wasn't even where Michael made landfall". Florida officials said Michael, packing winds of 155 miles per hour (250 kilometers per hour), was the most powerful storm to hit the state's northern Panhandle area in more than a century.

Michael had top sustained winds of 150 miles per hour as its core moved over Florida's Panhandle earlier in the afternoon as forecasters warned rain could reach up to a foot and the life-threatening storm surge could swell to 14 feet (4m).

Rick Reichmuth, Fox News' chief meteorologist, said Michael was the fourth most powerful storm to ever make landfall in the U.S.in terms of wind, and the third most powerful in terms of pressure, at 919 mb.

Michael is predicted to be a tropical storm by the time it reaches the SC border with Georgia, according to the National Weather Service. Michael did this after passing over unusually warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico, which likely helped to increase the storm's moisture content and provide fuel for more intense thunderstorms, a deeper central pressure, and stronger winds.

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.

A woman makes her way to an evacuation shelter in Tallahassee, Florida. "Structures built before 2001 are not created to handle that type of wind, typically", Long said.

In addition, this storm had the third-lowest central air pressure of any USA landfalling hurricane on record.

There are several ways to measure a hurricane's strength.

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It also brought the dangers of a life-threatening storm surge.

"Hurricane Michael can not break Florida", Scott vowed.

The Weather Channel warns of "catastrophic storm surge" and incredibly high speed winds associated with the storm.

"We're sending them out now", Scott said.

Ken Graham, director of the Miami-based National Hurricane Center, said Michael is "unfortunately, a historical and incredibly unsafe and life-threatening situation".

Michael began dashing homes into pieces and flooding neighborhoods shortly after crossing near Mexico Beach as a Category 4 storm.

A trash can and debris are blown down a street by Hurricane Michael on October 10, 2018, in Panama City, Florida. Search and rescue crews were expected to escalate efforts to reach hardest-hit areas and check for anyone trapped or injured in the storm debris.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles. Sea levels in the Gulf of Mexico have risen by about a foot over the past 100 years, so there's a direct link between Michael's coastal flooding and long-term climate change. "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.

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