Hurricane Michael causes 'unimaginable destruction' in Florida

12 October, 2018, 08:56 | Author: Kelly Sanders
  • Brian Bon inspects damages in the Panama City downtown area after Hurricane Michael made landfall in Panama City

According to the National Hurricane Center, the core of Michael will move across central and eastern Georgia Thursday morning, and then over southern and central SC later in the day.

A McDonald's sign damaged by Hurricane Michael is pictured in Panama City Beach.

Among those brought to safety were nine people rescued by helicopter from a bathroom of their home in Panama City, another one of the hardest-hit spots, after their roof collapsed, Petty Officer 3rd Class Ronald Hodges said.

Six people are reported to have died since the category four storm hit Florida early on Thursday, but this number is expected to rise as rescue efforts continue. A few blocks inland, about half the homes were reduced to piles of wood and siding and those still standing had suffered heavy damage.

Footage of a Waffle House in Panama City, that was damaged after a large pole fell on top of it during Hurricane Michael.

In Panama City, buildings were crushed, tall pine trees were sent flying and a steeple was knocked off a church.

"Our biggest thing is the downed lines and the downed trees", said Apalachicola Mayor Van Johnson.

Mr Long said many Florida buildings were not built to withstand a storm above the strength of a Category 3 hurricane on the five-level Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.


Hundreds of cars had broken windows.

Authorities said a falling tree killed a man outside Tallahassee, Florida, and an 11-year-old girl in Georgia was killed when the winds picked up a carport and dropped it on her home.

It has since been downgraded to a tropical storm as it moves through the Carolinas, which are still recovering from last month's Hurricane Florence. It was moving northeast at 23 miles per hour (37 kph). The NHC forecasts up to 7 inches for eastern Georgia and the Carolinas up to southern New England.

Brad Rippey, a meteorologist for the US Agriculture Department, said Michael severely damaged cotton, timber, pecans and peanuts, causing estimated liabilities as high as $1.9bn and affecting up to 1.5 million hectares. But it moved so fast and intensified so quickly that people didn't have much time to prepare, and emergency authorities lamented that many ignored the warnings.

"Why people didn't evacuate is something we should be studying", said Craig Fugate, former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and a former Florida state emergency management chief.

"Dawn in Panama City, Florida, revealed a sprawling mess of nearly unimaginable devastation wrought by the third-most powerful hurricane in recorded history to lash the US mainland", as Fox News reported.

The Category 4 hurricane once had wind speeds of up to 155 miles per hour.

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