Hurricane Michael evacuation: Florida declares emergency - Scott activates national guard

Katie Ramirez
October 11, 2018

The hurricane might also alter populations of toxic algae that have caused a months-long outbreak of red tide along Florida's Gulf coast, killing countless marine animals.

Both NOAA and Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft have flown through the hurricane's four quadrants - and the NHC says, "The planes actually passed through the eye around the same time [Tuesday morning], and reported that they could see one another".

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Hurricane Michael was centered about 420 miles (675 kilometers) south of Panama City at 5 a.m. Tuesday.

Tallahassee International Airport ‏is suspending commercial flight activity as 12:01 a.m. ET on Wednesday but expects to resume activity on Thursday.

The forecast track of Hurricane Michael.

While Florence wrung itself out for days and brought ruinous rains, fast-moving Michael is likely to be more about wind and storm surge.

He was amazed at how high the water was - inches from the top of the seawall washing over the dock - considering Hurricane Michael is hundreds of miles away.

Forecasters said parts of the Panhandle and Florida's marshy, lightly populated Big Bend area - the crook of Florida's elbow - could see 9 to 13 feet (2.7 to 4 meters) of storm surge.

Michael is forecast to be the most destructive storm to hit the Panhandle in decades.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott warned that the "monstrous hurricane" was just hours away, and his Democratic opponent for the Senate, Sen.

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On Monday, NASA's Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument captured Michael while still a Category 1.

Manatee Area under Storm Surge Watch. It churned about 170 miles southwest of Apalachicola, Fla., and was predicted to make landfall with that same strength by Wednesday afternoon. This is a life-threatening situation. "You can rebuild your home, you cannot rebuild your life". About 1,250 National Guard soldiers were aiding the process and more than 4,000 troops placed on standby, Scott tweeted. The Florida Highway Patrol has 350 troopers working 12-hour shifts.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency had numerous teams deployed and ready to respond, said FEMA spokesman Jeff Byard.

"Please be prepared, be careful and be SAFE!" The governors of Alabama and Georgia also made emergency declarations.

Gadsden County sheriff's spokeswoman Anglie Hightower said a "male subject" was killed by a tree toppling onto his house in Greensboro, Florida, near the state capital, Tallahassee, in the first report of a fatality from the hurricane.

Currently, the bulk of the forecast model guidance has the storm tracking southeast of the Maritimes, as well as Newfoundland this weekend. We will continue to monitor Hurricane Michael's path and GEMA/HS is leading our preparedness efforts. Promptly follow evacuation and other instructions from local officials.

Although the risk is lower, there will be some severe storms with possible tornadoes for the rest of us.

But the saturated ground left by Florence makes North Carolina more vulnerable. The vast majority of that wetness fell in the Yadkin-Pee Dee river basin, resulting in historic flooding of several rivers in the Pee Dee and Grand Strand regions of the Palmetto State.

And here is a look at the latest wind projection data ...

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