The eye wall of the now 150 mph Hurricane Michael is making landfall near Panama City, Florida. This storm has rapidly increased in strength over the past 24, 48, and 72 hours to become a now unprecedented event in the history of the Florida Panhandle.
The National Hurricane Center has forecasted storm surge to exceed 14 feet in some locations in the Big Bend region of northwestern Florida. The NHC has also extended Hurricane Warnings as far inland as southeastern Georgia, with Tropical Storm Warnings extending as far north as the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
The National Weather Service has also extended Extreme Wind Warnings for locations from Panama City to Apalachicola as the eye wall continues to bring winds in excess of 130-150 mph onshore.
Hurricane Michael has made history, not only as being the first category 4 hurricane to make landfall in the Florida Panhandle, nor only with its being the lowest pressure (919 millibars) recorded in the area, but also with its having formed and struck in the month of October.
The National Weather Service in Upton, New York has issued Tropical Storm Warnings for locations across The Tri-State Area. Storm Surge Watches and Warnings are also in effect.
Sustained winds in excess of 40-60 MPH are possible with this storm from New Jersey to Connecticut, creating the potential for widespread power outages, blocked roads, and high waves. The National Hurricane Center is expecting a storm surge of anywhere between 1 and 8 feet depending on the location, especially on the south facing shores of Long Island. Now is the time to act! Make sure you have a 3 day supply of food and water as well as flashlights, a weather radio, and portable batteries if at all possible. If evacuations are ordered for your area, do not hesitate to leave. The potential track for this storm remains somewhat uncertain, so please stay informed over the following several days. Official information may be found at hurricanes.gov (NHC), and at weather.gov (NWS).