Unscathed by Hurricane Michael, Lake City friends test their luck

Michael's conditions are similar to those of Hurricane Harvey, which devastated Texas previous year as a Category 4 storm that packed 130 miles per hour winds and left 68 people dead. It made landfall on the coast as a Category 1 hurricane on September 14 and drenched some parts of the state with 40 inches (101 centimeters) of rain.

A trash can and debris are blown down a street by Hurricane Michael on October 10, 2018, in Panama City, Florida.

Now that Hurricane Michael has made landfall, Georgia Power is monitoring the storm's path very closely and planning for their response to anticipated power outages.

But Brad Kieserman of the American Red Cross said on Wednesday as many as 320,000 people on Florida's Gulf Coast had disregarded evacuation notices.

"It really started as a tropical storm, and then it went to Category 1, then it was Category 2 and before you know it, it was Category 4", O'Shaughnessy said.

Hurricane Michael effects possible for Beaufort County
Alexander Charnicharo fishes at the seafront in Havana as Hurricane Michael passes by western Cuba on October 8, 2018. Voluntary, and in some cases, mandatory, evacuations were issued in some areas along the Florida Panhandle coast.

Regardless of Hurricane Michael's ultimate classification, those in the path of the storm are facing life-threatening winds, storm surge and other unsafe conditions. Homes were swallowed in storm surge.

Scientists say global warming is responsible for more intense and more frequent extreme weather, such as storms, droughts, floods and fires. "The emergency declaration is effective for seven days and makes all state resources available to local governments and entities within the impacted area of the hurricane", his office said. Eastern time. The US Energy Information Administration said about 388,000 customers in Florida, 46,000 customers in Georgia, and 45,000 customers in Alabama were in the dark as the storm moved inland. The storm, which has sustained winds of 60 mph, was about 25 miles east of Macon, Ga., the National Hurricane Center said in a 2 a.m. ET advisory.

In north Florida, Michael battered the shoreline with sideways rain, powerful gusts and crashing waves, swamping streets and docks, flattening trees, shredding awnings and peeling away shingles. The hurricane's winds and waves were so strong, their rumblings were detected on seismometers - equipment created to measure earthquakes. Emergency managers say they don't know how many left the area, but there were about 6000 people in 80 shelters in five states, including almost 1200 who are still in shelters following Hurricane Florence. Winds are sustained at 125 miles per hour. By Friday, it should be a post-tropical cyclone, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Megan Williams, left, and roommate Kaylee O'Brian take belongings from their destroyed home after several trees fell on the house during Hurricane Michael in Panama City, Florida.

The National Hurricane Center predicts Michael will stay a powerful and risky rainmaker as it moves across the U.S. Southeast and off the Mid-Atlantic coast before heading out to sea by Friday. Sea levels in the Gulf of Mexico have risen by about a foot over the past 100 years, so there's a direct link between Michael's coastal flooding and long-term climate change.

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