Hurricane Michael has been classified as Category 1 hurricane and will slash Cuba and the US Gulf Coast on Wednesday . It is forecasted to be a ‘dangerous and major hurricane’ and indicates that may be a Category 3 hurricane when it strikes as winds will garner a speed of 111 to 129 mph.
“Life-threatening storm surge is possible along portions of the Florida Gulf Coast regardless of the storm’s exact track or intensity,” the center said.
“Well-built framed homes may incur major damage or removal of roof decking and gable ends. Many trees will be snapped or uprooted, blocking numerous roads. Electricity and water will be unavailable for several days to weeks after the storm passes.”
“Heavy rainfall from Michael could produce life-threatening flash flooding from the Florida Panhandle and Big Bend region into portions of the Carolinas through Thursday,” the hurricane center said. The storm is currently aiming at a region that stretches from Alabama through Florida and into the Big bend area of Northern Florida.
“This storm has the potential to bring devastating impacts to communities across the Panhandle and Big Bend and every family must be prepared,”
“Everybody’s got to get ready. Don’t take a chance,” he said. “We’re going to get storm surge, we have wind, we have a chance of flooding, we have a significant chance of tornadoes.”
Gov. Rick Scott has dispatched 500 National Guard troops in advance of the storm and has declared a state of emergency for 26 counties such as Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Holmes, Washington, Bay, Jackson, Calhoun, Gulf, Gadsden, Liberty, Franklin, Leon, Wakulla, Jefferson, Madison, Taylor, Hamilton, Suwannee, Lafayette, Dixie, Columbia, Gilchrist, Levy and Citrus counties.
“Hurricane conditions will spread over portions of western Cuba this afternoon, where a hurricane warning is now in effect. Tropical storm conditions are expected over the northeastern Yucatan Peninsula and the Isle of Youth today,” the center said. “Michael is expected to produce heavy rainfall and flash flooding over portions of western Cuba and the northeastern Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico during the next couple of days.”
Storm Michael is expected to hit the province of Pinar Del Rio where most of the cigar’s tobacco is farmed. The Cuban Civil Defense meteorologists warned that the storm can cause flooding to residents living on the coast and that they could experience hurricane-force winds.