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Hurricane Michael

FSU Researchers Explore Impacts Of Michael On Births

Jul 11, 2019

By  News Service of Florida

Two Florida State University professors have received $400,000 to examine how Hurricane Michael impacted birth outcomes in the Florida Panhandle as a result of infrastructure damage and exposure to carbon monoxide.

Updated projections released on Tuesday predict 13 more named storms will form in 2019, with six being hurricanes and two classified as major hurricanes.
NOAA / NOAA

By Carl Lisciandrello

Researchers at Colorado State University are maintaining their prediction of a near-average 2019 hurricane season.

A tropical depression is likely to form in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, but the latest forecast trends may keep the worst of the weather west of the state.

Regardless of its exact track, 1 to 3 inches of rain may fall by Thursday in places along the immediate Gulf coast from near Fort Myers to Pensacola. Nearby seas will also grow unsettled, with minor coastal flooding and a high risk of rip currents expected.

The National Hurricane Center says a trough of  low pressure has an 80 percent chance of develloping into a tropical depression in the Gulf of Mexico in the next five days.
FLORIDA PUBLIC RADIO EMERGENCY NETWORK

Florida’s Division of Emergency Management is bracing for the potential growth of a storm system expected to move south into the Gulf of Mexico later this week, with particular attention given to Panhandle counties impacted by Hurricane Michael last year.

Trump Signs Disaster Relief Package

Jun 10, 2019

President Donald Trump on Thursday signed into law a $19.1 billion disaster-relief package that Florida officials have sought since Hurricane Michael pounded the Panhandle in October. 

Federal officials are giving the state of Florida $40 Million to help restore timber in the Caloosahatchee Forest.
Florida Forestry Service

Gov. Ron DeSantis says nearly half a billion dollars from the federal government will help Florida timber growers recover from the impacts of Hurricane Michael.

Many Hurricane Michael victims are still feeling the effects of the storm.  It not only caused physical damage to the area, but has left scars on the hearts and minds of survivors. 

Long-Sought Disaster Aid Package Passes House

Jun 4, 2019

A federal disaster-relief package, long sought by Florida officials and Panhandle residents recovering from the ravages of Hurricane Michael, received approval Monday from the U.S. House after three earlier attempts were blocked. 

Anyone who was in Panama City, Fla., last year when Hurricane Michael hit has a story to tell. Christina Harding rode out the storm with her mother, daughter and two nephews. "It was crazy," she says. "We had to tie the door shut because Michael was trying to come into the house with us, which was not what we wanted. It was like bam, bam, bam, bam. Like somebody trying to get in, you know?"

When Hurricane Michael struck the Panhandle of Florida last October, Keith and Susan Koppelman were huddled in the bathroom of their small, two-bedroom rental trailer just north of Panama City.

"When the winds came we both started praying," says Keith, 49. "I thought, 'Oh my God, this is a big storm.' "

After four hours, they finally emerged to survey the damage. The storm's 160-mile-per-hour winds had torn off the porch and peeled away the trailer's tin siding.

Florida Disaster Relief Blocked Again In Congress

May 28, 2019
Hurricane Michael was reclassified as a Category 5 hurricane.
NOAA

A second congressional Republican, arguing for a vote by the full House, blocked an attempt Tuesday to pass long-stalled federal disaster relief funding that would assist Florida’s hurricane-ravaged Panhandle.

The latest move came after a group of Panhandle residents targeted --- through a full-page ad in the Austin American-Statesman newspaper --- a Texas Republican who initially blocked the bill on Friday.

Approval Of Disaster Relief Package Delayed

May 28, 2019

A long-stalled federal disaster relief package, which is expected to help the Panhandle’s recovery from Hurricane Michael, will have to wait for a vote until the U.S. House returns from this weekend’s holiday recess. 

Congress On Cusp Of Delivering Long-Overdue Disaster Aid

May 24, 2019

The Senate on Thursday passed a long-overdue $19 billion disaster aid bill by a broad bipartisan vote, but only after Democrats insisted on tossing out President Donald Trump's $4.5 billion request to handle an unprecedented influx of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border. 

DeVaughn Putna Farrington / Facebook St. Croix Hurricane Maria Check In page

A Federal Communications Commission report says wireless carriers' poor preparation and coordination lengthened communication outages in the Florida Panhandle after Hurricane Michael. 

A housing crisis has emerged in the wake of Hurricane Michael. Now state and federal money is on the way to address it as local residents and leaders are growing anxious and frustrated. 

Trump Promises More Hurricane Relief For Florida Panhandle

May 9, 2019

President Donald Trump promised a swift infusion of federal aid to the Florida Panhandle seven months after devastating Hurricane Michael as he rallied supporters Wednesday for his re-election. 

Hurricane Michael was reclassified as a Category 5 hurricane.
NOAA

Hurricane Michael, which devastated a swath of the Florida Panhandle last fall, has been upgraded to a Category 5 storm, only the fourth to make recorded landfall in the United States and the first since 1992.

The announcement by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Friday came as no surprise to those still struggling to recover from the storm's destruction.

"My thought is simply that most of us thought we were dealing with a (Category) 5 anyway," said Al Cathey, mayor of Mexico Beach, which bore the brunt of the storm when it hit.

  April marks six months after Hurricane Michael wreaked havoc in the Florida panhandle and half a year later, Panama City and Mexico Beach are still in shambles.  On the six-month anniversary of the storm, more than 70 organizations came together to host a "Pray for Bay" event meant to unify the community and provide outreach. 

Lawmakers hope allowing state colleges impacted by Hurricane Michael to waive out of state tuition for 3 years will spur economic growth. 

The U.S. Air Force says it needs $4.9 billion in new funding over the next two and a half years to cover the costs of rebuilding two air bases hit by natural disasters.

About one-third of Offutt Air Force Base, in eastern Nebraska, was underwater earlier this month as flooding hit large swaths of the Midwest. And Tyndall Air Force Base in the Florida Panhandle was hit hard by Hurricane Michael in October.

When Hurricane Michael struck Mexico Beach on October 10, 2018, it made history as the strongest storm to hit the mainland United States since Hurricane Camille in 1969.

Just shy of Category Five strength, the storm cut a path of destruction through ten North Florida counties, killing at least 47 people before heading into Georgia. Florida's Office of Insurance Regulation recently reported that the insured losses from the storm have topped $5.8 billion.

Four Keys cities and Monroe County have sent FEMA bills for more than $91 million from Hurricane Irma. A year and a half after the storm, they have received less than 12 percent of the money.

Many 'Still Hurting' Nearly 5 Months After Hurricane Michael

Mar 3, 2019
Governor's Press Office

Paulina "Bela" Sebastiao would give almost anything to be able to do a load of laundry without having to drive miles from her Mexico Beach home. Anthony Campbell would appreciate having a gas station closer than an hour away from his house in Parker. And Patrick Muth just hopes it doesn't rain when it's time to go to work: His "office" in Panama City consists of a desk surrounded by rubble under an open sky.

Prescribed Burns Could Help Cleanup Hurricane Debris

Mar 2, 2019

The state is looking to prescribed fires to clean up the massive amount of timber left after Hurricane Michael. Tall Timbers’ Wildland fire scientist, Kevin Hiers , says salvaging is not going to be a viable option for most landowners in North Florida.

Hurricane Michael Caused $50M In Damage At Florida Prisons

Feb 25, 2019
NOAA

Officials say 20 state correctional facilities across 15 counties suffered about $50 million in damage from Hurricane Michael. 

Officials in charge of getting Tyndall Air Force Base back up and running gave an overview Thursday of where they are now and where they hope to be in the future. The base hosted it's first "Industry Day" since Hurricane Michael severely damaged it in October. 

Northwest Florida is the site of two of the worst natural disasters in U.S. History: the 2010 BP Oil Spill and last year’s devastating Hurricane Michael. State lawmakers are floating the possibility of using some of the oil spill settlement money to help the region recover from the storm.

On The Florida Roundup this week, we began with a look at the predicament of the state’s so-called “Forgotten Coast.” 

Cleanup and recovery from Hurricane Michael is slow, costly and ongoing. As donations to the area stall and media coverage fades, some residents of the Forgotten Coast fear the area is living up to its name.

More than three months after Hurricane Michael slammed into the Florida Panhandle, communities now are struggling with the storm's financial aftermath. In Mexico Beach, where Michael's 155 mile-per-hour winds flattened more than three-quarters of the homes, just removing the debris threatens to bankrupt the city.

On Highway 98, the beach road, nearly every house on the ocean side is gone. Collapsed home sites and piles of debris wait to be bulldozed away.

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