'Horrendous. Catastrophic': Menacing Michael Leaves Florida Devastated, Heads for Carolinas

12 October, 2018, 05:35 | Author: Darnell Taylor
  • Inmates in Walton County Florida volunteered Thursday to help clear debris Hurricane Michael left in the Euchee Valley

Sally Crown rode out Michael on the Panhandle thinking at first that the worst damage was the many fallen trees in her yard before she emerged to check on the cafe she manages.

Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center in hard-hit Panama City, 32 km northwest of Mexico Beach, was treating some of the injured. Patterson estimated 1,000 homes were completely or partially destroyed in his town of 3,500 people.

"This is going to be a long recovery but Florida is resilient, we help each other, and we survive", Scott said. "This was my sixth (hurricane), so I thought I was prepared".

In Panama City, buildings were crushed, tall pine trees were sent flying and a steeple was knocked off a church. A year ago, the school welcomed students and families displaced by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. "So far, everybody seems to be very safe".

Over Georgia, Michael will dump up to seven inches of rain as it continues on its path over the southeastern US.

They turned out to be correct, as warm ocean waters and a lack of wind shear - which are powerful opposing winds that can topple hurricanes - set the stage for the storm's intensification.

If destroyed homes, lost livelihoods and mass power outages were not enough to be dealing with, Florida's victims of Hurricane Michael are facing another potential problem - the state's toxic red tide.

Hurricane Michael has devastated the Florida Panhandle, leaving at least six people dead and nothing more than empty foundations and rubble in some parts of the small coastal towns it crashed through with near-record breaking force.

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Parts of Virginia were struck with heavy rains and flash flooding, said Jeff Caldwell, a spokesman for the state Department of Emergency Management.

However, once it moves over the Atlantic late tonight or early Friday the storm will once again intensify.

Emergency services carried out dozens of rescues of people caught in swiftly moving floodwaters in North Carolina.

Florida Governor Rick Scott told the Weather Channel the damage from Panama City down to Mexico Beach was "way worse than anybody ever anticipated".

Nearly 1.2 million homes and businesses were without power from Florida to Virginia on Thursday because of the storm.

Melendez captured the footage during a Facebook Live video, soon after Category 4 Hurricane Michael - packing 155 miles per hour winds - became the third-strongest cyclone to make landfall in US history.

Michael also disrupted energy operations in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico as it approached land, cutting crude oil production by more than 40 percent and natural gas output by almost one-third as offshore platforms were evacuated.

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