hurricanes

Live blog: Michael in Central Florida (3)

9:32am – Woken up by an automated call from my doctor’s office. At least, it isn’t “Rachel from Cardholder Services.”

10am – Tropical Storm/Surge Watches are now in effect for Coastal North Carolina… but have been lifted for the Alabama/Mississippi border region.

11:20am – A still graphic from TWC shows Tampa Bay is out of immediate danger, though strong outlying bands are still expected throughout the day into Thursday.

11:57am – However, NWC office in Tampa says that while most of Central Florida will be “uneffected” by Michael, Tampa Bay can still get “high storm surge, extensive coastal flooding and severe damage to docks, marinas and coastal dunes.”

12:04pm – Eyewall of Michael coming ashore along the coast of the Florida Panhandle…life threatening storm surge and catastrophic winds moving onshore.

12:37pm – Thank you to people calling/texting me, but as I said above, “Central Florida is under no immediate threat due to this storm” (I’m just bored, lol)

1pm – Hurricane Michael intensifies (cat 4) as it makes landfall near Mexico Beach Florida (nowhere near me) with life-threatening storm surge, hurricane force winds and heavy rainfall occurring over the Florida panhandle…

1:09pm – Duke Energy is predicting that at least 100k customers will lose power due to the storm.

1:13pm – Gov. Rick Scott activated the Florida Disaster Fund to help with the aftermath of the storm

1:37pm – Unfortunately, all the news stories I’m seeing now are “live coverage” (which do me exactly zero good, lol) so, I may have to end today’s live blog a bit early…

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Live blog: Michael in Central Florida (2)

10am: While Central Florida is not expected to see a direct hit (aside from periphery rain/wind), the governor warned that the Panhandle, Big Bend and Gulf Coast cities as far south as Tampa could see dangerous storm surges of 8-12’ as the storm approaches.

Noon: Yahoo News is reporting that Michael is now a category 2 storm.

1:04pmThe Atlanta Journal-Constitution is reporting that Georgia has declared a “State of Emergency

1:45pm – Governor Rick Scott orders mandatory evacuations for 11 Floridian counties.

1:50pmThe Orlando Sentinel is reporting that, with winds of 110mph, Michael is “nearing a category 3 storm” with winds tomorrow topping 125mph.

2:14pm – United Airlines has canceled flights scheduled for Tuesday evening through Wednesday afternoon to three airports in Florida — Pensacola, Panama City and Destin.

2:21pm – Radar on TWC shows small bands of moderate rain are moving through southern Orlando. The sky over SeaWorld is dark, but the steady winds seem relatively calm… for now anyway.

2:39pmOrlando Weekly is reporting that Florida Democrats are suing to extend the voter registration deadlines due to the hurricane.

3:12pm – The Washington Examiner is reporting that Hurricane Michael could cause “13 billion in property damages

4pm – Tropical Storm Warnings are in effect for Eastern/Southern Georgia with Tropical Storm Watches in effect for both North and South Carolina (neither of which need this after the pounding they took from Florence).

4:08pmUSA Today is saying Michael could be one of the worst storms on record to hit the Florida Panhandle.

4:28pm – A larger swath of heavy rain has just descended upon Orange County, but Central Florida is still slated to get less than 3” of rain out of this storm (a change from their previous estimate of 1-2”)

5:19pm – The rain band from the previous line appears to have moved offshore as sunlight barely pokes its way through the clouds. Yet, landfall in Northern Florida is still a day away…

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Live blog: Michael in Central Florida

1:12pm – Phone is charged, so I check the forecast on TWC app: Rain chance is negligible, but the winds have strengthen a bit, so I grab a light windbreaker and my hat and go downstairs to wait for the bus. As I’m waiting, a light rain begins to fall…

1:33pm – arrive at the bus stop outside the Publix at Regency Center. The rain has now stopped, and I am able to take some pictures of some ibis feeding in the wet ground near the pond before going inside the nearby McDonalds. Oh, and the new mystery store they just built next to Freddy’s is another Starbucks so yah… I guess.

2:19pm – leave Publix to find it is once again raining lightly, but, as I am waiting there, it slowly gets heavier and is a full-fledged downpour by the time we reach SeaWorld.

2:45pm – Did I mention, my umbrella was back at the unit? Because it was, and I’m now soaking wet… and so are my groceries, but at least, we’re inside as the rain slowly winds down outside. Not sure if standard a summer storm or an early “feeder band” (landfall in Florida is still 2 days away).

3:30pm – TWC is reporting that Gov. Rick Scott has issued a “State of Emergency” for all of Northern Florida. Mandatory evacuations are ordered for three counties along the Gulf Coast.

4pm – National Hurricane Center is reporting that Storm Surge/Hurricane warnings have been issued for Florida’s Gulf Coast stretching to the Alabama border (from there west is a Tropical Storm Warning). Rainfall totals along the Northern Gulf Coast are expected to be between 4-8” (whereas Orlando, which is not expected to be hit directly, will get 2-3”)

4:30pm – FSU closes its Tallahassee and Panama City campuses in advance of the storm.

7pm – No new warnings/watches, and rainfall is still predicted to be between 4-8” in Northern Florida/Southern Georgia with heavier hit areas could get as much as 12”.

9:05pm – moderate rain is back, but it’s expected to stop again by midnight. You’ll forgive me if I don’t feel like staying up to confirm this… right?

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Photos: Somewhere on 95

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Live blogging: Hurricane Matthew (Fri morning)

10:01am – Good morning, I survived the storm. I woke up several times last night due to loud gusty winds and heavy rain, but my condo doesn’t appear to have taken any damage. It’s sunny but with persistent gusty winds.

10:36am – Orange and Seminole Counties are still under curfew through tonight, but will reassess their decision around noon.

11:00am – NWS has downgraded the storm to a Cat 3, but it is still causing immense damage in coastal cities.

11:17am – Orlando Sentinel is reporting at least one death in Central Florida attributable to Matthew.

11:41am – Meanwhile, Matt Drudge has theorized that Hurricane Matthew is a government conspiracy to “make a point about climate change,” a sentiment echoed by fellow radio host Rush Limbaugh (who walked his statement back)

12:01pm -Chip and Company is reporting that all 4 Disney parks remain closed and will reopen tomorrow pending damage assessment. All resorts and their restaurants remain open.

12:30pm – Gov. Scott says “worst of Matthew is yet to come”

12:47pm – Damage assessments of Gables, Rosenthal and Medical campuses have been completed. So-called “Cardboard U” is open for business tomorrow. Game on.

 

Hopefully, this is my last post on the matter.

 

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Live blogging: Hurricane Matthew (Thurs eve)

5:04pm – It’s been pouring rain on and off all afternoon here in Orlando with each band getting progressively stronger. THIS current one is the real deal.

5:16pm – Believe it or not, there are still people on the roads.

5:24pm – Various computer models still show it coming over parts of Florida, but the actual forecast hasn’t changed much 5-8” of rain with winds about 20-40 miles per hour gusts of 65mph (TWC is calling for 5-7” but with winds gusting to 70-80mph)

6:05pm – TWC has downgraded their forecast to 3-5” with winds in the 20-40mph bracket (with gusts of 65mph). Rain has stopped for the moment.

6:35pm – Making leftover chicken tenders and fries for dinner. I forgot to buy groceries while I was out earlier today. Yes, I know that was STUPID. Oh and the rain is back.

6:55pm – My FB feed is pretty much dead, sorry. I’m going to go play video games while I still have power, and hope something fun gets posted by the time I get back.

7:45pm – TWC is reporting 20 thousand people are apparently without power near West Palm Beach. I still have power… for the moment.

8:03pm – NWS shows Matthew not making a direct hit on Orlando, but still shows it looping around to effect Central Florida early next week. Great.

8:17pm – Reuters is reporting 180 people dead on the island nation of Haiti. Over a dozen in the same village.

8:32pm – Orlando Sentinel has a round-up of various county by county forecasts for the storm

9:06pm – NWS office in Melbourne is still showing Orange County under a Hurricane Warning through tonight.

9:21pm – Whatever undiagnosed stomach ailment I have has been bothering me all evening. I think it’s psychosomatic from the stress of the storm.

 

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Live blogging Hurricane Matthew (Thurs morn)

10:01amOrlando Weekly is reporting that all state offices are closed, all tolls are lifted and that some hospitals in coastal areas were evacuated.

10:03am – The University of Miami is officially on “emergency lock down” – all classes are cancelled, and all retail and offices are closed for the day. Limited dining service is available in the two campus dining halls as long as weather permits, MREs will be available in the Residential Hall lobbies for times when the cafeterias close.

10:20am – Orlando International Airport announced it will be suspending all flights in\out of their airports at 8pm.

11:15am – Sunrail suspends all service through Monday (they don’t offer weekend service)

11:20am – Universal announces it is closing all parks including Wet N’ Wild and CityWalk at 3pm. Disney parks are apparently still open as well with guests going about enjoying their day despite the weather (at the moment is light rain with relatively calm winds).

11:30amTheme Park Tourist posted that all Disney Parks will close at 5pm, Legoland Florida will close at 5pm as scheduled and SeaWorld will close at 2pm.

12:14pm – TWC is predicting 5-7” of rain through Friday night with wind of 40-50mph with gusts of about 60-65mph. It is not expected to make landfall over Orlando, but we are still under a “Hurricane Warning.”

12:43pm – Not currently raining out, but the winds are strong. The proverbial calm before the storm.

 

Categories: disney world, florida, hurricanes, news, Orlando, SeaWorld Orlando, South Florida, transportation, Universal Studios, weather | Leave a comment

Live blogging: Hurricane Matthew (Wed night)

7:34pm – I was going to pack my bags around 2 o’clock this moring and take the first plane to…I had no idea. That’s why I’m still here. I may regret this decision later this week.

8:31pm – My alma mata, the University of Miami, has announced that all classes at Coral Gables\Rosenthal campuses will be cancelled on Thursday and Friday. The medical campus will remain open. The UM-FSU game slated for Saturday will go on as planned because – duh – priorities.

9:15pm – It’s been raining (much of it heavy) off and on for most of the evening with gusty winds and occasional flashes of lightning. These are just the periphery storms – the main action doesn’t start until tomorrow.

10:50pm – Watching the “Live Feed” of FOX 13’s “county by county” forecast for Florida. Orlando will either get nothing…or take a direct hit. How comforting.

11:17pm – Latest NWS forecast models now show a direct hit over Orlando. Other guides have it staying off shore. TWC is calling for heavy rain\thunder to begin around 3am so I better get to bed.

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Tropical Storm Colin (continued)

1:45am – Okay, so I was wrong, there’s been a HEAVY downpour for past half hour.

2:05am – Rain has stopped, but the whole condo is lit up by intermittent flashes of light which are getting brighter and closer together. I think another round of rain is coming.

2:17am– Called it! Heavy rain, deafening thunder and extremely bright flashes of lightening. This goes on for a while, but I fell asleep as soon as it stopped so that’s good.

4:30am– That was a quick nap. More rain, but no lightshow this time.

5:19am– All watches and warning for Central Florida have been cancelled. The storm is now passing over Savannah, Georgia… but Orlando is expected to get another 1-2” of rain this afternoon from an unrelated system.

6:27am – Sunrise, Orlando was lucky – EXTREMELY lucky.

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Tropical Storm Colin

10:35am – waiting for the weather to get here. I can’t really go anywhere today so I’m staying inside to do laundry (I didn’t plan it that way, honest).

11:55am – Gov. Rick Scott (R) declares a pre-emptive “State of Emergency” for 34 of 67 counties (including Orange).

12:35pm – Finish lunch, nothing is happening outside yet so I take second load out of dryer, strip sheets off bed and throw them into the washer. Not exciting, but I can’t have a 5-hour gap in this post.

-2:15pm – Tropical Storm Warning issued for Charleston, SC, as outer bands arrive in Southwestern\Central Florida flooding reported along Tampa Bay beaches, and I’m… playing some mindless cow clicker on FB.

-4:57pm – It has started. ‪#‎TropicalStormColin Pouring rain for nearly an hour straight now. I’m not worried, I’m sure at least a few of my friends are pulling for me…right?

-5:33pm – Receive an e-mail from apartment management saying to stock batteries\non-perishable food and stay tuned to local TV\radio for news. Also take furniture off patios\balconies which I immediately did (they were wet, but otherwise undamaged).

-6:55pm – Scott reissues “State of Emergency,” mobilizes Florida National Guard. Also, my FB post from 2hrs ago only has 2 “likes.”

-8:16pm– Weather Channel is predicting 3-5 inches of rain for most of Florida. Storm is expected to make landfall near Tallahassee and make its way to Charleston and Cape Hatteras by Tuesday afternoon before heading back to sea.

-9:29pm – Rain seems to have stopped for the moment, but Reuters news service is reporting the Tampa Bay area is reporting widespread power outages, major street flooding and a lot of people dismissing this as “just” a tropical storm.

10:07pm – The rain is back, winds continue as they were. FB post is up to 5 “likes.”

10:37pmSarasota Herald-Tribune is reporting only “sporadic power outages, minor street flooding and some beach erosion.”

11:04pm – Rain sounds like its stopped again. I can’t guarantee any sleep, but I’m probably going to go to bed now.

11:09pm – Go into bedroom to discover my bed is unmade…because my sheets are still in the washer. I’m up for another hour at least.

11:29pm – I’m pretty sure everything is done for the night. The rain is gone and the winds while still gusty sound like they’ve calmed down significantly.

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