Dramatic videos show what happened as Hurricane Michael made landfall
Dramatic videos show what happened as Hurricane Michael made landfall
Enlarge Hurricane Michael satellite image as of 5pm ET
11 October, 2018, 10:49
A structure in Panama City Beach was no match for Michael's winds, as the home under construction collapsed an hour prior to the Category 4 storm's eyewall coming ashore.
Florida officials said Michael, packing winds of 155 miles per hour (250 kph), was the most powerful storm to hit the southern U.S. state in more than a century.
She said the incident was "debris-related".
Multiple airports were closed on Wednesday, including Tallahassee International Airport, Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport, Pensacola International Airport and Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport.
As winds subsided in Panama City, resident Reid Garrett said his concerns shifted to flooding outside his apartment complex, which surrounded by downed trees.
An estimated 375,000 people in more than 20 counties were ordered or advised to evacuate.
It said Michael was now a Category 3 storm with winds abating but still extremely unsafe at 125 miles per hour (205 kph).
"We're in trouble. We're in bad trouble, Steven", said storm chaser Brett Adair, with LiveStorms Media, in a video that was being broadcast live on Facebook by NBC 15 in Mobile, Alabama. "It was weird. We went outside and you could smell the pine, and there it was, laying on the chimney". "We have trees being uprooted, heavy, heavy rain".
With a low barometric pressure recorded at 919 millibars, the measure of a hurricane's force, Michael ranked as the third-strongest storm on record to make landfall in the continental United States.
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"It's going to be terrible", Thomas toldCNN. "The emergency declaration is effective for seven days and makes all state resources available to local governments and entities within the impacted area of the hurricane", his office said. He acknowledged that a lot of the residents in the area were poor and said it was probably tough to leave.
"This happened so quickly, we weren't exactly prepared", he said.
A state of emergency has been declared in several dozen counties along Florida's Panhandle and Big Bend regions.
Trump issued an emergency declaration for Florida, freeing up federal funds for relief operations and providing the assistance of FEMA, which has more than 3,000 people on the ground.
The storm is also expected to batter North and SC both still recovering from Hurricane Florence, which left dozens dead and caused billions of dollars in damage last month.
As the hurricane moves out of Florida, Scott warned that flash floods and tornadoes are still possibilities and said "the weather is still extremely unsafe".
People in coastal parts of 20 Florida counties had been told to head to safer locations, but by Wednesday morning were told it was too late to flee. More than 200 people were killed. Ranked as a Category 4, the disaster ruined the town's commercial industry and its status as a major port whilst claiming the lives of up to 12,000 inhabitants.
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He said there was no damage in the town, but officers had not yet been able to contact villages closer to the epicentre. It earlier warned that waves up to about 30 centimetres were possible within 300 kilometres of the epicentre.
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