Looters Go Through Wreckage of Family Dollar Store After Hurricane Michael

James Marshall
October 13, 2018

Ken Widelski, NOAA/NWS emergency-response meteorologist, said the storm presented a risk of more flooding for communities in SC and North Carolina still recovering from Hurricane Florence, which made landfall last month as a Category 1 storm but soaked the area after stalling for several days.

The NHC said: "Michael should continue to weaken for the next 12h or so as the centre moves through SC and into North Carolina".

The devastation inflicted by Hurricane Michael came into focus on Thursday with rows upon rows of homes found smashed to pieces, and search-and-rescue crews made their way into the stricken areas in hopes of accounting for hundreds of people who defied evacuation orders.

Ahead of Michael among USA hurricanes were the 1935 Labor Day hurricane, which left 485 dead; Hurricane Camille, which killed 259 people in 1969, and Hurricane Andrew in 1992, which resulted in 65 deaths, and.

The Governors of North and SC have warned local residents to brace for impact in the region. That figure is 326,000 in Florida and 133,000 in Georgia. Numerous most heavily-hit areas have not yet been reached, as flooding, downed power lines, trees and other debris blocking roadways are prohibiting crews' access.

Two hospitals in Panama City, Fla., where Michael arrived Wednesday, were evacuated due to damage.

Numerous injured in Florida were taken to hard-hit Panama City, 32 kilometres northwest of Mexico Beach.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott said Friday morning that the state has "half a million gallons of fuel being distributed daily at 40 fueling stations to support our utility crews as they work around the clock to restore power".

About 32km south of Mexico Beach, floodwaters were more than 2.1 metres deep near Apalachicola, a town of about 2,300 residents, hurricane centre chief Ken Graham said.

"We're starting from scratch, all of us", Plushnik said. Twisted street signs lay on the ground. Now their home is full of mud and everywhere they look there's utter devastation in their Florida Panhandle community: fishing boats tossed like toys, roofs lifted off of buildings and pine trees snapped like matchsticks in 155 miles per hour winds.

Mexico Beach, close to where Michael made landfall just short of a Category 5 hurricane, was devastated by the storm.

"This is a war zone". Hanson asked. "This city is destroyed. We thought the windows were going to break at any time", Beu said.

Numerous beach's residents followed evacuation orders. Numerous 600 families who live there had followed orders to pack what they could in a single suitcase as they were evacuated ahead of the storm.

Others said they remained because road closures and police checkpoints make it very hard to get back home. Only Hurricane Camille on the Mississippi Gulf Coast in 1969 and the so-called Labor Day hurricane of 1935 in the Florida Keys were more intense.

Meteorologist Bill Steffen described the casualty rate in the aftermath of such a massive storm as a credit to all involved.

"Once that sheer weakened, the rest of the conditions were already present", said Corene J. Matyas, a hurricane expert and associate professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Florida. Residents are walking through piles of debris, some assessing the damage and others trying to get out and find food. "All major roadways are passable", the city said, adding that 83 percent of its traffic signals were operating normally.

A man in Florida captured eerie blue skies and sunshine inside the eye of monster Hurricane Michael as it passed over him Wednesday afternoon.

"This is much, much worse", he said. "You can not tell where he stopped harvest and where the rest of it was being harvested by the storm". Officials also suspected the state had been hit by five tornadoes.

Homes destroyed by Hurricane Michael are shown in this aerial photo in Mexico Beach, Fla., on October 11, 2018.

"I think you're going to see it climb", FEMA Administrator Brock Long said.

In addition, a firefighter was killed when a tractor-trailer rear-ended a fire engine that was at the scene of a auto accident on Interstate 295 in the Richmond area, according to the Virginia State Police.

In Virginia, the National Weather Service said on Friday, "significant river flooding is occurring or forecast on the Appomattox River and possibly even on the lower James River".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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