Hurricane Michael slams into Florida, charges into Southeast

09:00 UTC shows Hurricane Michael off the US Gulf Coast.- Hurricane Michael closed in on Florida's Gulf Coast

Hurricane Michael, the most powerful on record to hit the Florida Panhandle since 1851, is tracking north toward Georgia and the Carolinas and bringing risky storm surges and flooding.

When Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle Wednesday, it was a Category 4 hurricane.

As the destructive forces of Hurricane Michael were set to make landfall on the Florida Panhandle Wednesday, the astronauts aboard the International Space Station were able to capture breathtaking video of the storm.

"Along our coast, communities are going to see unimaginable devastation".

The Gadsden County Sheriff's office said that a man was found dead in his home in a small town outside of Tallahassee after a tree crashed through the roof.

The eye of the storm, ...

The death, in an area west of state capital Tallahassee, was the first confirmed since Michael made landfall.

Around 375,000 people were under either mandatory or voluntary evacuation orders across 18 counties in Florida in preparation of the storm, and a state of emergency had been declared in 35 counties prior to the storm making landfall. "We can rebuild your house, but we cannot rebuild your life", Scott said at a press conference Tuesday, warning that "this storm can kill you".

President Donald Trump issued an emergency declaration for Florida, freeing up federal funds for relief operations and providing the assistance of FEMA, which has more than 3,000 people on the ground. I think it's possible that it will happen with Michael.

"Storm surge will be the most damaging aspect of the storm", says Kottlowski. Some 17,000 utility restoration workers were also on call. He acknowledged that a lot of the residents in the area were poor and said it was probably tough to leave.

More than 600,000 were without power across the region on Wednesday night and officials warn that some areas could be without power for weeks. The Carolinas, still recovering following Hurricane Florence, could see heavy rain, potentially causing flooding.

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, Fla., Oct. 10, 2018.

The "potentially catastrophic" storm has sustained winds of 145mph, the National Hurricane Center said in its latest update. A little over a day later, it had transformed into a monster. Fueled in part by above-average water temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico, the storm rapidly intensified at the start of this week.

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. But warmer water in the Gulf and other large bodies of water is here to stay because of climate change.

Michael's minimum central pressure - a key measure of hurricane strength - was measured at 919 millibars when it made landfall.

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