Track live forecasts of river flooding ahead of Hurricane Michael

Pauline Gross
October 10, 2018

Drawing energy from the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the storm strengthened rapidly into a potentially devastating Category 3 and was getting much better organized after nightfall. With Michael's winds projected to be even stronger than that, Wakulla County residents were urged to evacuate inland. "We have known for days that, regardless of size, we would see a significant storm impact in the Florida Panhandle and Big Bend".

The storm's center and where it makes landfall with its destructive winds represent just one of several concerns.

Hurricane Michael became a Category 3 storm with 120 miles per hour maximum sustained winds on October 9-ahead of making landfall along the Florida Panhandle, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). She worked all night stocking shelves at a big-box store that was closing later today, then got to work securing her yard. As Michael nears landfall, we're sharing all you need to know about the impending storm. A storm surge watch is in effect for the Anclote River to Anna Maria Island, including Tampa Bay, and for the Alabama-Florida border to the Okaloosa-Walton County line.

There will be no shelters open in Wakulla County, the sheriff's office warned on Facebook, because they are rated safe only for hurricanes with top sustained winds below 111 miles per hour (178 kph).

The National Hurricane Centre (NHC) said a "life-threatening storm surge" was expected along much of the coast of the Florida Panhandle.

The heaviest rain will tend to fall in areas that were missed by Florence and focused from the Florida Panhandle to southwestern and central Georgia to part of central SC.

The storm is forecast to make landfall near Panama City, Florida, as a strong Category 3 on Wednesday afternoon.

In Florida, nearly three dozen shelters opened or were prepared to open as the storm neared.

Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan warned residents during a news conference Monday evening that first responders won't be able to reach them during the storm or immediately after. Authorities were also searching for a boy swept away by a river in Guatemala.

The storm is threatening risky surges to low-lying areas ill-equipped to handle them.

"Dont think that you can ride this out if youre in a low-lying area", Nelson said on CNN. Evacuations already had been ordered in parts of 10 counties, according to USA Today. The storm was implicated in the deaths of 80 Floridians, according to the Associated Press - including residents at a nursing home.

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National disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho provided the updated figure Thursday at a news conference in Jakarta. In a rare move, Indonesia's government has appealed for global help to cope with the tragedy unfolding on Sulawesi island.

The neighbouring state of Alabama has declared a state of emergency.

Gov. Rick Scott issued a State of Emergency Sunday for 26 counties in anticipation for the storm.

"We are running out of time", Scott said in a post on Twitter.

"Storm surge is the No. 1 problem that you can see from these storms".

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for.

State offices, schools and universities were to close on Tuesday through the end of the week in panhandle counties.

Both Peaton and Scott encourage residents to have at least three days' worth of food and supplies, and check on their neighbors and monitor local news coverage. The storm was centered about 365 miles south of Apalachicola and 395 miles south of Panama City, Florida. "Take care of them".

"A northward motion is expected through tonight, followed by a northeastward motion on Wednesday and Thursday".

Florida Fish and Wildlife has put 40 additional law enforcement officers on notice to deploy with a variety of special equipment, including boats that can be used for high-water rescues.

National Hurricane Center track for Hurricane Michael, as of Tuesday afternoon.

Other reports by GizPress

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