Personal Safety

Fast-strengthening hurricane closes in on Florida Panhandle

Fast-strengthening hurricane closes in on Florida Panhandle

Fast-strengthening hurricane closes in on Florida Panhandle – CBS News 8 – San Diego, CA News Station – KFMB Channel 8 Member Center: Fast-strengthening hurricane closes in on Florida Panhandle Posted: Updated: (Patti Blake/News Herald via AP). Bobby Smith boards up the windows at Jani’s Ceramics in Panama City, Fla., on Monday, Oct. 8, 2018, in preparation for the arrival of Hurricane Michael. (AP Photo/Gary Fineout). Tallahassee Mayor and Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Andrew Gillum, left, helps Eboni Sipling fill up sandbags in Tallahassee, Fla., Monday, Oct. 8, 2018. Residents in Florida’s Panhandle and Big Bend are getting ready for… (Devon Ravine/Northwest Florida Daily News via AP). Commercial boats leave the Destin Harbor in Destin, Fla., on Monday, Oct. 8, 2018. Residents of this Florida panhandle city were busy Monday readying themselves for Hurricane Michael, which is predict… (NOAA via AP). This satellite image provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows a view of Tropical Storm Michael, lower right, churning as it heads toward the Florida Panhandle, Sunday, Oct. 7, 2018, at 6:52 p.m. Eastern Time. (Patti Blake /News Herald via AP). Rob Docko ties a knot while securing his boat at the St. Andrews Marina in Panama City, Fla., Monday, Oct. 8, 2018, to prepare for Hurricane Michael. Tuesday, October 9 2018 10:11 AM EDT 2018-10-09 14:11:41 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:43 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:43:08 GMT In Washington and California, the election often isn’t over on election night. In Washington and California, the election often isn’t over on election night. Tuesday, October 9 2018 9:27 AM EDT 2018-10-09 13:27:38 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:43 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:43:03 GMT Backers of broad marijuana legalization are looking to break through a geographic barrier in November and get their first foothold in the Midwest after a string of election victories in Northeastern and Western… Backers of broad marijuana legalization are looking to break through a geographic barrier in November and get their first foothold in the Midwest after a string of election victories in Northeastern and Western states. Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:57 AM EDT 2018-10-09 04:57:41 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:47 GMT (Patti Blake/News Herald via AP). Bobby Smith boards up the windows at Jani’s Ceramics in Panama City, Fla., on Monday, Oct. 8, 2018, in preparation for the arrival of Hurricane Michael. ‘Monstrous’ Hurricane Michael gaining strength over warm tropical waters, forecast to quickly intensify into a major hurricane in coming hours as it heads toward north Florida. ‘Monstrous’ Hurricane Michael gaining strength over warm tropical waters, forecast to quickly intensify into a major hurricane in coming hours as it heads toward north Florida. Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:39 AM EDT 2018-10-09 04:39:15 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:35 GMT (AP Photo/Hans Pennink). Family members and friends gather for a candlelight vigil memorial at Mohawk Valley Gateway Overlook Pedestrian Bridge in Amsterdam, N.Y., Monday, Oct. 8, 2018. The memorial honored 20 people who died in Saturday’s fatal limous… A ceremony for the victims of the upstate New York limousine crash that killed 20 people ended with participants lifting candles above their heads to signal unity and perseverance. A ceremony for the victims of the upstate New York limousine crash that killed 20 people ended with participants lifting candles above their heads to signal unity and perseverance. Monday, October 8 2018 11:57 AM EDT 2018-10-08 15:57:05 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:25 GMT (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, file). FILE–IIn this Aug. 16, 2018, file photo, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke speaks to members of the media outside the White House in Washington, D.C. Zinke has scheduled a visit, Monday, Oct. 8 to Montana, where … U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is in southwestern Montana, where he’s expected to approve a plan to block new mining claims on public lands near Yellowstone National Park. U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is in southwestern Montana, where he’s expected to approve a plan to block new mining claims on public lands near Yellowstone National Park. Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:47 AM EDT 2018-10-09 04:47:23 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:23 GMT The owner of a limo company in the crash that killed 20 people was well known to law enforcement as an FBI informant. The owner of a limo company in the crash that killed 20 people was well known to law enforcement as an FBI informant. Monday, October 8 2018 12:56 AM EDT 2018-10-08 04:56:48 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:20 GMT Hundreds of California wine country homeowners who lost their houses to the state’s most destructive wildfire last year are complaining that a $1.3 billion U.S. Army Corps of Engineers cleanup project made their… Hundreds of California wine country homeowners who lost their houses to the state’s most destructive wildfire last year are complaining that a $1.3 billion U.S. Army Corps of Engineers cleanup project made their situations worse. Tuesday, October 9 2018 9:17 AM EDT 2018-10-09 13:17:37 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:15 GMT (Jamie “Adventureman” McDonald via AP). A man who bystanders said was clinging to a tree in the South Llano River is rescued by helicopter, Monday, Oct. 8, 2018 in Junction, Texas. Crews in boats and helicopters are searching for at least four people m… Four men remain missing after a West Texas RV park was overrun by raging floodwaters and authorities are awaiting daybreak to resume their search. Four men remain missing after a West Texas RV park was overrun by raging floodwaters and authorities are awaiting daybreak to resume their search. Monday, October 8 2018 10:39 AM EDT 2018-10-08 14:39:25 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:42 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:42:11 GMT (AP Photos/Rich Pedroncelli, File). FILE – This combination of March 8, 2018, photos shows California gubernatorial candidates Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, left, a Democrat and Republican businessman John Cox in Sacramento, Calif. Cox and Newsom is debating … The two men hoping to be California’s next governor are about to face each other for what’s expected to be their only debate ahead of the November election. The two men hoping to be California’s next governor are about to face each other for what’s expected to be their only debate ahead of the November election. Tuesday, October 9 2018 8:47 AM EDT 2018-10-09 12:47:42 GMT Updated: Tuesday, October 9 2018 12:41 PM EDT 2018-10-09 16:41:34 GMT Rapper Kanye West has been invited to the White House to have lunch with President Donald Trump and meet with Jared Kushner to talk about manufacturing, prison reform, preventing gang violence and reducing violence… Rapper Kanye West has been invited to the White House to have lunch with President Donald Trump and meet with Jared Kushner to talk about manufacturing, prison reform, preventing gang violence and reducing violence in Chicago.
Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in again, but not before President Donald Trump slammed his opponents for a “campaign of personal destruction.”
Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in again, but not before President Donald Trump slammed his opponents for a “campaign of personal destruction.”
A commercial pilot from Oregon says “one special seed” and months of care produced a massive pumpkin that tipped the scales at a contest in Northern California
A commercial pilot from Oregon says “one special seed” and months of care produced a massive pumpkin that tipped the scales at a contest in Northern California
President Donald Trump said Monday that he has no plans to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, delivering a reprieve to the Justice Department official whose future has been the source of intense scrutiny for two weeks
President Donald Trump said Monday that he has no plans to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, delivering a reprieve to the Justice Department official whose future has been the source of intense scrutiny for two weeks
2 Americans win Nobel economics prize for work on climate change and innovation
2 Americans win Nobel economics prize for work on climate change and innovation
2 Americans win Nobel economics prize for work on climate change and innovation
2 Americans win Nobel economics prize for work on climate change and innovation
A co-winner of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize is calling for the world to do more to fight genocide and sexual violence
A co-winner of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize is calling for the world to do more to fight genocide and sexual violence
Jodie Whittaker, the first woman to lead ‘Doctor Who’ wants to be a role model to all; New York Comic Con fans react positively
Jodie Whittaker, the first woman to lead ‘Doctor Who’ wants to be a role model to all; New York Comic Con fans react positively
Florida governor rushing emergency preparations for Michael, which is expected to become a hurricane before midweek landfall on northeast U.S. Gulf Coast.
Florida governor rushing emergency preparations for Michael, which is expected to become a hurricane before midweek landfall on northeast U.S. Gulf Coast.
The manager of a store where a limo crash killed 20 people says the intersection where it occurred has long been dangerous
The manager of a store where a limo crash killed 20 people says the intersection where it occurred has long been dangerous
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying an Argentinian satellite has blasted off from California
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying an Argentinian satellite has blasted off from California
By GARY FINEOUTAssociated Press
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) – An estimated 120,000 people along the Florida Panhandle were ordered to clear out on Tuesday as Hurricane Michael rapidly picked up steam in the Gulf of Mexico and closed in with winds of 110 mph and a potential storm surge of 12 feet.
Beach dwellers rushed to board up their homes and sandbag their properties against the fast-moving hurricane, which was expected to blow ashore around midday Wednesday.
The speed of the storm – Michael was moving north 12 mph (19 kph) – gave many people a dwindling number of hours to prepare or flee before being caught up in damaging wind and rain.
“Guess what? That’s today,” National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham said. “If they tell you to leave, you have to leave.”
By 11 a.m., Michael had winds of 110 mph (175 kph), just below a major Category 3 hurricane, and was getting stronger, drawing energy from Gulf waters in the mid-80s.
The hurricane’s effects will be felt far from its eye.
Forecasters said Michael’s tropical storm-force winds stretched 370 miles (595 kilometers) across, with hurricane-strength winds extending up to 35 miles (55 kilometers) from the center.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott also warned people across northwest Florida that the “monstrous hurricane” was just hours away, bringing deadly risks from high wind, storm surge and heavy rain.
His Democratic opponent in Florida’s Senate race, Sen. Bill Nelson, said a “wall of water” could cause major destruction along the Panhandle.
“Don’t think that you can ride this out if you’re in a low-lying area,” Nelson said on CNN.
Mandatory evacuation orders went into effect for some 120,000 people in Panama City Beach and across other low-lying parts of the coast.
Forecasters said parts of Florida’s marshy, lightly populated Big Bend area – the crook of Florida’s elbow – could see up to 12 feet (3.7 meters) of storm surge.
Michael also could dump up to a foot (30 centimeters) of rain over some Panhandle communities before it sweeps through the Southeast and goes out to sea over the next few days.
Forecasters said it could bring 3 to 6 inches of rain to Georgia, the Carolinas and Virginia, triggering flash flooding in a corner of the country still recovering from Hurricane Florence.
“I know people are fatigued from Florence, but don’t let this storm catch you with your guard down,” North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said, adding, “A number of homes have rooftop tarps that could be damaged or blown away with this wind.”
While Florence took five days between the time it turned into a hurricane and the moment it blew ashore in the Carolinas, Michael gave Florida what could amount to just two days’ notice. It developed into a hurricane on Monday.
At the western end of the Florida Panhandle, in and around Pensacola, Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan bluntly warned people: “If you decide to stay in your home and a tree falls on your house or the storm surge catches you and you’re now calling for help, there’s no one that can respond to help you.”
Michael wasn’t quite done wreaking havoc in the Caribbean.
In Cuba, it dumped more than 10 inches (27 centimeters) of rain in places, flooding fields, damaging roads, knocking out power and destroying some homes in the western province of Pinar del Rio. Cuban authorities said they evacuated about 400 people from low-lying areas.
Disaster agencies in El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua reported 13 deaths as roofs collapsed and residents were carried away by swollen rivers.
In Florida, Scott declared a state of emergency for 35 counties, from the Panhandle to Tampa Bay, activated hundreds of Florida National Guard members and waived tolls to encourage evacuations. The governors of Alabama and Georgia also declared emergencies.
With just a month to go before Election Day, Florida voters in evacuation zones were given an extra day to register to vote, once offices reopen after the storm.
Scott also told Florida hospitals and nursing homes to do all they can to assure the safety of the elderly and infirm. After Hurricane Irma last year, 14 people died when a South Florida nursing home lost power and air conditioning.
“If you’re responsible for a patient, you’re responsible for the patient. Take care of them,” he said.
In the small Panhandle city of Apalachicola, Mayor Van Johnson Sr. said the 2,300 residents were frantically preparing for what could be a blow unlike any seen there in decades. Many filled sandbags, boarded up homes and lined up to buy gas and groceries.
“We’re looking at a significant storm with significant impact, possibly greater than I’ve seen in my 59 years of life,” Johnson said of his city on Apalachicola Bay, where about 90 percent of Florida’s oysters are harvested.
Farther inland, in the state capital, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, Florida’s Democratic nominee for governor, helped people fill sandbags.
“There’s nothing between us and this storm but warm water, and I think that’s what terrifies us about the potential impacts,” Gillum said.
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Associated Press writers Jonathan Drew in Raleigh, N.C., and Andrea Rodriguez in Cuba contributed to this report. Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. All content © Copyright 2000 – 2018 KFMB-TV. All Rights Reserved.

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