Hurricane Michael on course to hit Mid-Atlantic Thursday

hurricane michael mapNOAA graphic

Hurricane Michael, now a Category 4 storm, is expected to make landfall near Panama City, Florida, this afternoon, bringing disastrous winds and torrential rains to the Gulf Coast. By Thursday, the storm is likely to reach the Mid-Atlantic region, bringing a day or so of heavy rain.

Here is the latest official statement from the National Hurricane Center:

At 700 AM CDT (1200 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Michael was located
near latitude 29.0 North, longitude 86.3 West. Michael is moving
toward the north near 13 mph (20 km/h). A turn toward the north-
northeast is expected later this morning, with a turn toward the
northeast expected this afternoon or tonight. A motion toward the
northeast at a faster forward speed is forecast on Thursday and
Friday. On the forecast track, the eye of Michael is expected to
move ashore over the Florida Panhandle later today, move
northeastward across the southeastern United States tonight and
Thursday, and then move off the Mid-Atlantic coast away from the
United States on Friday.

Reports from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft
indicate that maximum sustained winds have increased to near 145 mph
(230 km/h) with higher gusts. Michael is an extremely dangerous
category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.
Some additional strengthening is possible before landfall. After
landfall, Michael should weaken as it crosses the southeastern
United States.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 45 miles (75 km) from
the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 185
miles (295 km). A wind gust to 56 mph (91 km/h) was recently
reported at Apalachicola Regional Airport.


About the Author

Truman Lewis
A former reporter and bureau chief, Truman Lewis has covered presidential campaigns, state politics and stories ranging from organized crime to environmental and consumer protection.