Two, including a child, killed in Hurricane Michael; Florida witnesses 'worst' storm

WATCH Hurricane Michael hits Cuba and Mexico on its way to U.S

WATCH Hurricane Michael hits Cuba and Mexico on its way to U.S

Although Tallahassee avoided a direct hit from the Category 4 storm, Mayor Andrew Gillum said on Facebook that "our community has been pretty significantly impacted".

According to the 10 a.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center, Michael's winds had increased to 110 miles per hour and the central pressure was down to 965 millibars. But storm surge, that's a lot of water that can come onshore.

Increasingly, climate change is part of the unsafe mix as well. From there, it is projected to remain a tropical storm as it continues eastward across the Atlantic Ocean. "It came out of nowhere and really intensified rapidly".

Wakulla County issued a dire warning, saying it won't open any of its shelters - because they're safety-rated only for storms up to Category 2 strength, WFSU reports. "It had the pedal to the metal all the way until it hit the coast", he said.

RICK SCOTT: Hurricane Michael is a massive storm that could bring total devastation to parts of our state, especially in the Panhandle.

Based on its internal barometric pressure, Michael was the third most powerful hurricane to hit the US mainland, behind the unnamed Labor Day storm of 1935 and Camille in 1969.

While prediction of a storm's path has grown increasingly accurate, the ability to predict rapid intensification has lagged somewhat, said Haiyan Jiang, an associate professor in the department of earth and environment at Florida International University.

A pine tree punched a hole in their roof, and Beu's ears popped because of the drop in barometric pressure from the storm. "No one's going to survive (such a wall of water)", he said. It was the most powerful hurricane on record to hit the Panhandle.

Warm water is "basically the battery for, the fuel, that hurricanes feed off of", said Jennifer Francis, a professor of atmospheric sciences at Rutgers University's department of marine and coastal sciences.

It's too early to say what could happen, but this is something our meteorologists are watching very closely.

In its discussion, the Hurricane Center said the storm was becoming better organized and would be a major hurricane upon landfall.

Tropical storm-force winds are expected to be in the area as soon as Tuesday night.

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Even without the scientific calculations, he said, the connection makes intuitive sense.

Bur forecasters fear serious hazards could also have a huge impact dozens of miles inland, with storm surges possibly flooding rivers while Tallahassee could be battered by winds of 75mph.

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for.

The wanderings of hurricanes vary widely, steered by wind currents and high- and low-pressure systems; some storms race across oceans and land while others dawdle.

Hurricane Michael's battering waves swamped streets and docks and shrieking winds splintered trees and rooftops.

A year ago saw a string of catastrophic storms batter the western Atlantic - including Irma, Maria and Harvey, which caused a record-equaling $125 billion in damage when it flooded the Houston metropolitan area.

State officials issued disaster declarations in Alabama and Georgia and the storm is also expected to bring heavy rainfall to North and SC.

Warnings have also been been expanded to the U.S. east coast, from Fernandina Beach - just north of Jacksonville - to SC, as forecasters fear the storm will spread rapidly as it moves inland. Downgraded to a tropical storm over south Georgia, it was weakening by the hour.

A National Guard team got into Mexico Beach and found 20 survivors overnight, and more crews were pushing into the area in the morning, with the fate of many other residents unknown.

The storm is likely to fire up the debate over global warming.

On Cedar Key to the south, a tiny island particularly vulnerable to the fury of hurricanes, damage was thankfully far less than feared. "You want to check on things, and begin the recovery process", Scott said, but "we have to make sure things are safe".

He drew an analogy to our wardrobes. "You can rebuild your home, you cannot rebuild your life".

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