At a Glance
  • Michael is expected to landfall along the Florida Panhandle Gulf Coast Wednesday.
  • Storm surge, damaging winds and heavy rain are likely impacts along the northeastern Gulf Coast.
  • Hurricane warnings and storm surge warnings have been issued along the Gulf coast of Florida.
  • Heavy rain and strong winds will spread farther inland across parts of the Southeast after landfall.
Hurricane Michael has strengthened to Category 2 intensity, and is forecast to strike the Florida Panhandle as a Category 3 with dangerous storm surge flooding, destructive winds and flooding rainfall. Michael will also bring heavy rain and strong winds to other parts of the southeastern United States after it moves inland.

"Michael could develop into a potentially catastrophic event for the northeastern Gulf Coast," the National Weather Service office in Tallahassee, Florida, wrote in its area forecast discussion Monday afternoon. Michael could be the strongest hurricane to landfall along the stretch of Florida's Panhandle Gulf Coast in 12 years
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Current Storm Status
(The highest cloud tops, corresponding to the most vigorous convection, are shown in the brightest red colors. Clustering, deep convection around the center is a sign of a healthy tropical cyclone.)

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Forecast

Timing
- Landfall is most likely to occur somewhere between the Florida Panhandle and the Big Bend of Florida a few hours either side of midday Wednesday.

- Conditions may begin to deteriorate as early as Tuesday evening on the northeastern Gulf Coast.

- After landfall, Michael will then accelerate inland across the southeastern U.S. Wednesday night through Thursday night with gusty winds and heavy rain.

- Michael could enhance rainfall in the mid-Atlantic and southeastern New England Thursday night and Friday.
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Projected Path
(The red-shaded area denotes the potential path of the center of the tropical cyclone. Note that impacts (particularly heavy rain, high surf, coastal flooding) with any tropical cyclone may spread beyond its forecast path.)

Intensity

- The NHC is forecasting Michael to be a Category 3 hurricane when it approaches the Florida Panhandle Wednesday.

- There remains some uncertainty in the intensity forecast, and Michael could be slightly weaker or stronger near landfall.

- Michael will still be a dangerous hurricane even if it does not intensify as much as currently forecast.

Wind

- Hurricane-force winds (74-plus mph) are expected to arrive in the hurricane warning area on the Florida Gulf coast Wednesday and are possible in the hurricane watch area on the northeastern Gulf Coast by that time.

- Tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) are expected to arrive in the hurricane warning area on the Florida Gulf coast by Tuesday night or early Wednesday.

- Tropical-storm-force winds are most likely to arrive in the tropical storm warning area on the northeastern Gulf Coast by Tuesday night or early Wednesday and are possible in the tropical storm watch area by that time.

Let's pray that everyone stays safe....