TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The remnants of Hurricane Michael plowed through the Southeast U.S. on Thursday after killing at least two people, demolishing homes and knocking out power to hundreds of thousands of customers a day after devastating the Florida Panhandle.
Michael was a tropical storm as it crossed the Carolinas, according to the National Hurricane Center. The storm hit the Florida coastline near Mexico Beach on Wednesday as a Category 4 hurricane, the strongest to hit the Panhandle in 167 years of record-keeping, and one of the most intense to ever make landfall in the U.S.
Video: Homes swept of foundation or missing from their stilt foundation in Mexico Beach, FL; scenes of complete destruction up and down the beach. This was where the brunt of Hurricane #Michael storm surge came ashore @breakingweather @accuweather pic.twitter.com/SZmlL4zsEP
— Reed Timmer (@ReedTimmerAccu) October 11, 2018
The storm packed 155-mph winds when it came ashore, and pushed a wall of ocean water into the Florida coast. People there woke up to “unimaginable destruction,” including homes, businesses, roads and infrastructure that were wiped out, Gov. Rick Scott said Thursday.
“This hurricane was an absolute monster, and the damage left in its wake has yet to be fully understood,” Scott said during a news conference. He said he was heading to Panama City and Mexico Beach, near where Michael made landfall. “Today the top focus is search and rescue,” the governor said.
Courtesy LSM/Brandon Clement pic.twitter.com/hqHTdkOz2E
— ABC 33/40 News (@abc3340) October 11, 2018
#Michael is now a big rainmaker in the mid-Atlantic before it bolts into the Atlantic tomorrow. Flash flooding and gusty winds are ongoing in parts of Virginia. The latest: https://t.co/x92uGr0szj pic.twitter.com/KKZwbF3U93
— The Weather Channel (@weatherchannel) October 11, 2018
The scale of the damage was just coming into view early Thursday. Aerial footage from Mexico Beach, a community of about 1,200, showed a scene of almost complete devastation, with street after street of buildings reduced to rubble.
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