Hurricane Michael Strengthens as it Takes Aim at Florida's Panhandle

by Jessica Montevago
Hurricane Michael Strengthens as it Takes Aim at Florida's Panhandle


Florida’s panhandle is on alert as Hurricane Michael continues to strengthen, as it moves across the Gulf of Mexico.

The Category 2 storm has maximum sustained winds of 100 mph, the National Hurricane Center said, threatening dangerous storm surge, damaging winds, and life-threatening flash flooding to more than 300 miles of coastline from Florida through the southeastern U.S.

A hurricane warning is in place from the Alabama-Florida border to the Suwannee River in Florida; a hurricane watch is in effect for the coast of Alabama.

Hurricane Michael is expected to become a Category 3 hurricane when it makes landfall on Wednesday, bringing a dangerous storm surge of 9 to 12 feet to the coast from roughly Apalachicola to Cedar Key. Heavy rain, up to 12 inches, could fall in Florida's Panhandle and Big Bend areas, southeastern Alabama and southern Georgia, the National Hurricane Center said. Parts of the Carolinas and southern Virginia could also see up to 6 inches of rain.

Florida’s Gov. Rick Scott warned residents that the “monstrous storm” will be “life-threatening and extremely dangerous,” and asked that they heed evacuation orders, which were issued along the Florida Panhandle. He has declared a state of emergency in 35 counties.

Airports have also begun to cease operations. The Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport said it will cease all operations beginning at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday. Northwest Florida Beaches Airport, in Panama City, Florida has canceled 17 flights to and from the airport for Tuesday and another 14 on Wednesday, as of this morning, according to flight tracker FlightAware. 

As the storm churns toward Florida, western Cuba could be slammed with up to 12 inches of rain, threatening flash floods and mudslides. Over the weekend, flooding related to Michael led to at least 13 deaths in the Central American countries of Nicaragua, Honduras, and El Salvador, according to officials.

  1
  0
Tip of the Day

“Millennials have a different mindset than other demographics. It’s important that travel agents get into the conversation and promote the value they bring to the travel experience.” - Dan Durazo, Allianz Global Assistance

Daily Top List

Places to Visit Ahead of ‘Star Wars: Episode IX’

1. Whippendell Woods, UK - Naboo Forest in “The Phantom Menace”

2. Villa del Balbianello, Lenno, Italy - Naboo Lake Retreat in “Attack of the Clones”

3. Mount Etna, Italy - Mustafar in “Revenge of the Sith”

4. Death Valley National Park, California - Tatooine in “A New Hope”

5. Finse, Norway - Hoth in “The Empire Strikes Back”

Source: TMR

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
G Adventures New Family Tours Target the Gap in the Family Market
G Adventures New Family Tours Target the Gap in the Family Market

The brand set out to make the tours affordable and accessible, and to take family members of all ages to iconic destinations together.

The Unstoppable Trend: Solo Travel Growing and Going Just About Anywhere
The Unstoppable Trend: Solo Travel Growing and Going Just About Anywhere

Many suppliers are reducing or eliminating solo travel supplements, prompting even more solo travelers to book trips.

National Geographic Family Journeys with G Adventures Open for Booking
National Geographic Family Journeys with G Adventures Open for Booking

The trips are all led by two specially trained Chief Experience Officers who are trained to cater the trips to both the interest of the adults and the children.

Adventures by Disney Reveals Lineup of 2020 Itineraries
Adventures by Disney Reveals Lineup of 2020 Itineraries

Among the offerings is a 10-day trip to Egypt, including a new three-part tour and experiences tailored specifically for adults.

Journese Launches ‘Cancel for Any Reason’ with Commission Protection
Journese Launches ‘Cancel for Any Reason’ with Commission Protection

Good news for travel advisors, the plan features 100% commission protection and a simplified cancellation process.

Tour Operators Predict Rapid Recovery After Notre Dame Fire
Tour Operators Predict Rapid Recovery After Notre Dame Fire

Unable to say for sure, most tour operators suspect the enthusiasm for France may actually be heightened over the tragedy.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards & Outlooks