Hurricane Michael reaches Category 2, threatens southern US

Hurricane Michael reaches Category 2, threatens southern US

Residents of Florida's Panhandle frantically filled sandbags, boarded up homes and secured boats Monday as they anxiously awaited Hurricane Michael, which forecasters warned could smash into the state's Gulf Coast as a risky major hurricane within days.

Hurricane Michael quickly intensified into a Category 2 over warm Gulf of Mexico waters on Tuesday (Wednesday NZ Time) amid fears it would strike Florida on Wednesday (Thursday NZT) as an even stronger hurricane.

Storm warnings have been issued across most of the Gulf Coast, from Tampa to much of the Panhandle. It is expected to come ashore as a major hurricane over the Florida Panhandle sometime Wednesday.

Much of the state saw the "real thing" past year, when Hurricane Irma force more than 6 million evacuations, flooded cities and left millions without power.

Gary Givens, owner of Gary's Oyster Shack in Panama City, Florida, said he was closing his restaurant around lunch time on Tuesday with the help of his crew ahead of the storm's arrival.

"Think about what we've seen before with storms like Hurricane Irma", he said.

As of 2 p.m. EDT, Michael was moving north at 12 mph, about 310 miles south of Apalachicola, Florida, with maximum sustained winds of 110 mph. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 185 miles.

But some officials were anxious by what they weren't seeing - a rush of evacuees.

"I just can't bring myself to spend that much money", she said. Because if there's one thing that the latest IPCC Special Report, released this past weekend, makes clear, it's that the climate-related challenges we face are only expected to deepen. "We got everything tied down". "We're just now running out of regular (gas)", worker Danny Hess told CNN affiliate WJHG.

Byard said an estimated 500,000 people face evacuation orders and advisories in Florida, where residents and tourists were fleeing low-lying areas in at least 20 counties stretching along 200 miles (322 km) of shore in the Panhandle and adjacent Big Bend regions. That included Pensacola Beach but not in Pensacola itself, a city of about 54,000.

According to NHC, the worst storm surge is expected between Mexico Beach and Keaton Beach in Florida where nine to 13 feet of inundation is possible.

3 takeaways from ALDS Game 2
Masahiro Tanaka picked up the win as he allowed one earned run on three hits with four strikeouts and one walk over five innings. Red Sox: 1B Mitch Moreland had what Cora called aggressive treatment on his right hamstring, which forced him from Game 2.

Desai is also out of water and down to about two dozen bags of ice, and yet there's still people coming in for last-minute supplies.

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, Florida's Democratic nominee for governor, had planned to campaign in South Florida on Monday and Tuesday, but instead threw himself into helping his city's residents fill sandbags and make other preparations. Beyond the physical and financial difficulty of rebuilding, the ongoing fight for recognition of needs, of lives lost, and of rights, requires an emotional strength beyond that normally required of storm victims.

Annette Strickland, 75, arrived at a Tallahassee high school.

On the Florida Panhandle, Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan bluntly advised residents who choose to ride out the storm that first responders won't be able to reach them during or immediately after Michael smashes into the coast.

With an officiant standing in front of them, the couple said their vows on the beach as brisk winds brushed them. "That's just me. I don't want to be ugly".

Michael also could dump up to a foot (30 centimetres) of rain over some Panhandle communities before it sweeps through the Southeast and goes out to sea over the next few days.

The NHC expects the center of Hurricane Michael to cross onto the Florida Panhandle or Florida Big Bend Area on Wednesday.

Even if the storm stays offshore and doesn't directly impact the region, we'll be seeing some soaking rains later this week, partly fueled by Michael.

Michael wasn't quite done wreaking havoc in the Caribbean on Tuesday (Wednesday NZT).

In Cuba, it dropped more than 10 inches (27 centimeters) of rain in places, flooding fields, damaging roads, knocking out power and destroying some homes in the western province of Pinar del Rio.

Related Articles

  • U.S. Ambassador to United Nations Nikki Haley Resigns

    U.S. Ambassador to United Nations Nikki Haley Resigns

    She recently said she supported Mr Trump's administration but admitted they still had their differences. United States President Donald Trump announced the news Tuesday as he accepted her resignation .
    Melania Trump has tea with Kenya's 1st lady

    Melania Trump has tea with Kenya's 1st lady

    Correspondents with her say she's never appeared so delighted as she has been on her trip to Ghana, Malawi, Kenya and Cairo. During a ceremony at the school, the first lady participated in giving the school 1.4 million books.
    Unemployment rate falls to 3.7 percent, lowest mark since 1969

    Unemployment rate falls to 3.7 percent, lowest mark since 1969

    Most U.S. businesses will try to absorb the higher costs themselves, at least for now, economists say, and avoid layoffs. That trend suggests that a brighter economic outlook hasn't caused consumers to recklessly build up unsustainable debt.
  • Hamilton fastest in Japanese GP practice

    Hamilton fastest in Japanese GP practice

    It is a position the German team have enjoyed for most of the season yet once again they are taking nothing for granted.
    Brett Kavanaugh is a Supreme Court Justice

    Brett Kavanaugh is a Supreme Court Justice

    In a much-watched, televised vote Saturday afternoon, senators voted 50-48 to confirm President Trump's pick to the High Court. The FBI investigated the accusations and found no corroborating evidence, clearing the way for today's Senate vote.
    MAHREZ BOTTLED IT! Liverpool 0-0 Man City | Match Reaction & Player Ratings

    MAHREZ BOTTLED IT! Liverpool 0-0 Man City | Match Reaction & Player Ratings

    Don't lose the ball in risky positions because when you lose the ball there, they counter attack with Firmino, Mane and Salah. We had our chances in the last minutes to win the game but we miss it.
  • SpaceX to launch and land Falcon 9 rocket from Southern California

    SpaceX to launch and land Falcon 9 rocket from Southern California

    A Space X Falcon 9 rocket was set to take off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California around 7:21 p.m. The upgraded Block 5 Falcon 9 is part of SpaceX's plan for vastly cheaper and more efficient spaceflight.
    Collins announces support for Kavanaugh, making chances of confirmation almost  certain

    Collins announces support for Kavanaugh, making chances of confirmation almost certain

    Susan Collins , who sits next to Murkowski, leaned over and put her hand on the arm of Murkowski's chair. A final vote on Kavanaugh's nomination is set to be held Saturday, but moments after Collins spoke, Sen.
    Liverpool v Manchester City — Big Match Focus

    Liverpool v Manchester City — Big Match Focus

    Guardiola said on Friday playmaker Kevin De Bruyne , out since August with a knee injury, would be assessed ahead of the game. Keita's energy, technique and work-rate has meant the Guinean star has fitted straight into the Liverpool side this season .
  • The OnePlus 6T will launch this month

    The OnePlus 6T will launch this month

    The OnePlus 6T will come with a feature that few, if any, smartphones in the USA have: An in-display fingerprint reader. OnePlus 6T will also have a 6.4-inch display, dual-rear cameras and be powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor.
    Second Trump-Kim summit to take place 'at earliest date'

    Second Trump-Kim summit to take place 'at earliest date'

    Japan, notably, has been wary of Trump's initiative, fearing it could affect its long-standing security relationship with the U.S. It added that the two sides agreed on holding working negotiations for the second North Korean-U.S. summit as early as possible.
    US Senate confirms Judge Brett Kavanaugh for Supreme Court

    US Senate confirms Judge Brett Kavanaugh for Supreme Court

    Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party when the two were in high school. The Republicans vowed to keep "this horny male energy going through the mid-terms".