Published: Thu, October 11, 2018
Sci-tech | By April Francis

Up Next: Tropical Storm Michael

Up Next: Tropical Storm Michael

"Impacts from Hurricane Michael along the Florida Panhandle will include a risky storm surge, flooding rainfall and damaging winds".

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, who is the Democratic nominee for governor, had planned to campaign in South Florida on Monday and Tuesday, but he said he would return to the city to help with storm preparations.

With maximum sustained winds of 155 miles per hour, Michael was 2 miles per hour shy of a Category 5 hurricane when it struck land.

It is forecasted to make landfall as a strong Category 3 hurricane in the Florida Panhandle by Wednesday.

In a Facebook post Monday, the Wakulla County Sheriff's Office said no shelters would be open in Wakulla County because Michael was forecast to become a major hurricane with winds topping 111 miles per hour (178 kph).

Michael is expected to continue across the Gulf through the night and move inland over the Florida Panhandle on Wednesday.

Hurricane conditions, including heavy rainfall and flash flooding, are expected to lash Cuba on Tuesday, according to the NWS.

The Embassy will also monitor developments and coordinate with the Filipino community in these areas.

"We haven't seen anything like this in the Panhandle in decades", Scott said at the Escambia County Emergency Operations Center.

Stronger sustained tropical-storm force winds would be confined to the coast or just off shore, maybe for Citrus County, if at all, says FOX 13's meteorologist Dave Osterberg.

At Florida Gov. Rick Scott's request, President Trump approved a pre-landfall emergency declaration for the 35 counties where the governor already had declared a state of emergency because of the approaching storm. A slight risk of severe weather has been outlined for central Georgia for today and tonight for the threat of spin-up tornadoes.

Winds of 15 to 25 knots with gusts prompted Monday's Small Craft Advisory on South Florida waters.

Right now, the National Hurricane Center predicts a landfall along the Florida panhandle on Wednesday. Storm surge warnings were also in place along the Florida and Alabama coasts.

As Hurricane Michael marches toward the Gulf Coast, and eventually, Georgia, several veterans in 11Alive's newsroom brought up Hurricane Opal - a 1995 hurricane that took a similar path.

President Trump, speaking at a law enforcement convention in Florida, said his administration is prepared to deal with the impacts of Hurricane Michael. "It looks like another big one", he said. A hurricane warning was issued from the Alabama-Florida border eastwards to Suwannee River.

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