Hurricane may bring winds, rain to Lowndes County

Pauline Gross
October 10, 2018

Tropical Storm Michael has formed in the northwestern Caribbean as of early Sunday afternoon. The fix bill came in at more than $60 billion, ranking Irma among the most costly storms in US history. But within hours Sunday it had gained more punch and its top sustained winds clocked in at 60 mph (95 kph) by late Sunday evening.

"In fact, almost every piece of intensity guidance brings the cyclone to hurricane strength before it reaches land, including the GFS, ECMWF, and UKMET global models, which all show significant deepening of the central pressure", National Hurricance Center forecaster Robbie Berg wrote in a morning discussion of the storm. At this time of year wind shear can tear storms structures apart, but some meteorologists are suggesting that wind shear will be lower than normal, providing an environment more conducive to intensification and for the storm to maintain its structure over the coming days.

The National Hurricane Centers model expects Michael to become a hurricane early Tuesday morning. Additional strengthening is expected overnight, and is forecast to become a category 4 storm before it makes landfall in the Florida panhandle.

As of 11 p.m. Tuesday, Michael is centered about 220 miles south of Panama City, Florida, and moving north at 12 mph. Tuesday and Wednesday will bring more of a southerly push to the winds, staying in the same 10-20mph range through much of the day.

The hurricane center, citing Michael's risky trifecta of storm surge, flash flooding and winds, described the seventh hurricane of the Atlantic season as "life-threatening".

Hurricane force winds extend outwards as much as 30 miles and tropical-storm-force winds up to 175 miles from the center of Michael.

Rick Scott on Sunday said he planned to declare a state of emergency for counties in the Florida Panhandle and the Big Bend area of the state.

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The National Hurricane Center is predicting it will gain strength and become Tropical Storm Michael by tonight, and should head into the Gulf of Mexico late Monday.

The hurricane center advised residents along the northeastern and central U.S. Gulf Coast to monitor the storm's progress.

Systems gets upgraded to named storms when wind strength exceeds 39 miles per hour.

For DC, although the current track keeps the center of Michael southeast of our area, it will still influence our weather. A hurricane warning was in effect for the Alabama-Florida border to the Suwanee River, with a hurricane watch in place from the Alabama-Florida border to the Mississippi-Alabama border.

Florida's capital city of Tallahassee, which is in the Panhandle, opened two locations Sunday where residents could get sandbags to prepare for flooding.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey declared a statewide emergency on Monday ahead of the storm.

Other reports by GizPress

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