Hurricane Michael to hit Florida, but will there be any ME impact?

Hurricane Michael to hit Florida, but will there be any ME impact?

With Michael's winds projected to be even stronger than that, Wakulla County residents were urged to evacuate inland.

"Remember, this storm could grow stronger and be a Category 3 hitting our state".

By 5 p.m. Monday, Michael's top sustained winds were around 80 miles per hour as it headed north at 9 miles per hour.

If Michael continues to intensify and stay on the National Hurricane Center's forecasted path, storm surge impacts east of the hurricane's eye are expected to be most severe, where storm surge and waves could bring water levels to rise as high as 16 to 20 feet, the USGS predicts.

In the small Panhandle city of Apalachicola, Mayor Van Johnson Sr said the 2300 residents were frantically preparing for what could be a strike unlike any seen there in decades.

Storm surge that could be greater than 6 feet is forecast as far south as Crystal River with more than 9 feet into Apalachicola Bay.

From Indian Pass, Florida, to Cedar Key, Florida, 8 to 12 feet of storm surge could inundate some areas, the agency warned.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott expanded a state of emergency declaration Tuesday to include 35 counties in preparation for the storm.

"Families should take the opportunity today to make sure they have three days of food and water, as well as all needed medications", Governor Scott wrote on Twitter.

"Minimal impact" is a lousy title for an action film but a good prediction for a hurricane, and that's what Ricketts said was coming to the D.C. area.

Many schools, businesses and government buildings will be closed and energy companies have halted almost a fifth of the oil production on the Gulf of Mexico, a part of the U.S. which is responsible for 17% of daily USA crude oil output.

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Michael gained new strength over warm tropical waters amid a forecast that it would swiftly intensify into a major hurricane before striking Florida's northeast Gulf Coast, where frantic coastal residents were boarding up homes and seeking evacuation routes away from the unsafe storm heading their way.

The storm will track up through Florida and Georgia before moving into North Carolina, bringing 2-5 inches of rain along with the threat of flooding and wind gusts of up to 60 miles per hour. Western Cuba was also forecast to get torrential rains. Some 13,000 utility restoration workers were also on standby.

President Donald Trump, speaking to reporters at the White House, said the country was very well prepared for the hurricane, adding it was much bigger than had been expected.

Florida State University campuses in Tallahassee and Panama City plan to close Tuesday through Friday.

Lines have formed at petrol stations and people have been stocking up on emergency food supplies. "Hurricane Michael poses a deadly threat". Scott activated 2,500 National Guard troops and made more than 300 state troopers available for deployment.

More than 45 per cent of the nation's refining capacity is located along the US Gulf Coast, which also is home to 51 per cent of total US natural gas processing capability.

Some Panama City residents were on the beach enjoying a cool breeze ahead of the storm, while others were loading up cars with luggage, and visitors were checking out of hotels.

By 11 a.m., Michael had winds of 110 miles per hour (175 kph), just below a major Category 3 hurricane, and was getting stronger, drawing energy from Gulf waters in the mid-80s. "It's forecast to be a large and unsafe hurricane at landfall".

Hurricane warnings were posted from the Alabama border to the Suwannee River.

The center is then expected to move inland over the Florida Panhandle or Florida Big Bend area on Wednesday, and then move northeastward across the southeastern United States Wednesday night and Thursday.

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