Michael strikes Florida panhandle

Hurricane Michael damage in Panama City, FL, USA, 10 Oct 2018 (Instagram)

Hurricane Michael slammed the coastline of the Florida panhandle making landfall mid-afternoon as a Category 4 storm.

Michael is the strongest hurricane to hit the United States since Camille in 1969 with winds up to 250 km/h and as much as 300 mm of rain.

Warmer than normal water temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico helped fuel Michael and the accompanying storm surge which submerged communities near Panama City.

Forecasters say the storm was downgraded to a Category 1 as it crossed Georgia.

Michael is expected to weaken to a post-tropical depression by the time it passes south of Nova Scotia on Saturday.

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Debby dumps on Florida

Even an alligator tries to escape the Florida flooding, 25 June 2012 (Bay News 9 photo)

After swirling for days in the Gulf of Mexico, Tropical Storm Debby finally made landfall on Florida’s west coast today dumping heavy rain on the already saturated region.

The U.S. Hurricane Centre says almost 600 mm (24 inches) of rain has fallen in an area north of Tampa and Debby has sustained winds of about 65 km/h.

A combination of storm surge and high tides is expected to bring more flooding to towns along Florida’s Gulf Coast.

A state of emergency was declared in Florida yesterday and as much as 200 mm of rain could still fall in parts of northern parts of the state and Georgia over the next couple of days.

Tornadoes tear up American Midwest

Henryville in southern Indiana USA, 02 Mar 2012 (AP)

Tornado season is well underway in the American Midwest after at least 40 people were killed in a series of vicious twisters.

The storms created a path of destruction in the states of Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Alabama and Georgia.

“The damage I saw was the worst I’ve seen.  It was a war zone, debris everywhere, buildings destroyed, other buildings just the walls standing, roofs gone.  It was a terrible sight.”

Those words from Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear who described his visit to the tornado-ravaged town of West Liberty.