Hurricane Michael

Emily Khor, Features and Entertainment Reporter

The Atlantic coast suffered from yet another hurricane, the seventh this year and second major one. With Hurricane Michael being the third-most intense landfalling storm in the United States. It is the strongest recorded one in the Florida panhandle, as well as terms of highest sustained wind speed. In wind speed it is the fourth-strongest hurricane that made landfall in the country.

   Forming in southwestern Caribbean Sea on October 2nd, it became a tropical depression 5 days later as it slowly developed. The next day, it became a hurricane by West Cuba and moved North towards the Gulf of Mexico as it continued to grow into a major hurricane October 9th and then onto a Category 4. On October 10th, Micheal reached peak winds of 155 mph by Mexico Beach, Florida. Although it weakened as it moved inward toward Chesapeake Bay and lowered to a tropical storm over Georgia, at least 33 deaths were caused by the devastation. It became an extratropical cyclone on the 12th as it exited Central America off Mid-Atlantic coasts.

  Michael was responsible for 15 deaths in Central America and 18 in the United States, as well as an estimate of $8 billion USD in damages. 200,000 people in Cuba were left without power, while Panama City and Mexico Beach suffered the worst. Electricity failure, storm surges, and extreme winds were a sudden danger to the people living in those areas. Unlike Irma of 2017, warnings were not put out as much or fast enough to prepare for. Irma moved incredibly slow, so it gave a lot of time to the citizens, Michael was just to be watched until it gained more speed and power suddenly. Western Cuba evacuated around 300 people and 375,000 Americans were asked to leave as well. A list of counties was made by Governor Rick Scott on October 7th and 8th in which the residents were advised to be prepared for the hurricane. 92 counties in Florida were declared a state of emergency by Georgia Governor Nathan Deal on the 9th.

  Many projects have been arranged and started to help the people affected by Hurricane Michael. From helping to clean up and recovering items, to providing food and shelter; people from all over the nation have come together to help those in need. This shows humanity and compassion in terrible times, it is a light of hope for those who need it, it’s refreshing to see.