Hurricane Michael has claimed seven reported lives in Florida, Georgia and North Carolina.
Michael, which experts are categorizing as one of the most intense hurricanes to make landfall in U.S. history, has taken out entire towns in its journey on land, and it essentially leveled Mexico Beach, Florida, on Thursday, according to FEMA Administrator Brock Long, who described the area as “ground zero.”
While the death toll could rise once officials and first responders get through the debris, USA Today reported seven deaths so far as the hurricane relaxes to a tropical storm: five in Florida, one in Georgia and one in North Carolina.
Out of five dead in Florida, four were from Gadsden County alone, while an 11-year-old in Georgia was killed when a carpet flew through her home and a man in North Carolina was killed from a falling tree.
“It’s like a war zone or something out or a horror movie,” Panama Beach resident Peter Muller told USA Today.
Courtesy LSM/Brandon Clement pic.twitter.com/hqHTdkOz2E
— ABC 33/40 News (@abc3340) October 11, 2018
On top of the deaths, nearly 600,000 residents in two states have lost power, while another 170,000 are without power in Alabama and both the Carolinas, where residents could see up to nine inches of rain in the coming days, according to the National Hurricane Center. (RELATED: Here’s A Breakdown Of What Michael Left In Its Aftermath)
At 5 p.m. local time, Michael’s center was about 20 miles northwest of Raleigh, North Carolina, moving at about 25 mph, compared to its 155 mph winds at landfall.
CNN decided Thursday to cancel a scheduled Senate debate in Florida between Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and Republican Gov. Rick Scott, citing the hurricane’s devastation in their state.
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