QR.bizNewsTD 14 upgraded to Tropical Storm Michael

TD 14 upgraded to Tropical Storm Michael

Either way, we'll likely experience a quick period of heavy rain somewhere along the Carolinas and perhaps some wind gusts between 40 to 45 miles per hour from late Wednesday into Thursday and perhaps even into Friday morning before Michael quickly moves off the North Carolina coast.

As of 11 p.m. Monday, Michael was centered about 455 miles south of Apalachicola, Florida, and 485 miles south of Panama City, Florida.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott issued an order for a state of emergency for 26 counties to rush preparations in the Florida Panhandle and the Big Bend area, freeing up resources and activating 500 members of the Florida National Guard. Tropical Storm Michael is already a fairly good-sized storm. Michael was now a Category 1 hurricane, at the bottom of the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale. Scroll down to see impacts.

Today's forecast for Palm Beach County includes a 20 to 30 percent chance of rain with highs in the upper 80s. This area is expected to face the full range of hurricane hazards as early as Tuesday, which include torrential rain, damaging winds, coastal flooding from rising ocean waters or storm surge and tornadoes.

"We are alarmed, to put it mildly, by how it has established an intense core (with a large area of very high cloud tops, indicating strong convection) near the circulation center in the teeth of brisk westerly wind shear", said Truchelut. It will however bring an increase of tropical moisture, bringing higher rain chances and a return of summer-like humidity to the area by the middle of the week. Michael could be as strong as a category 3 storm at that time.

From there, all indications are that it will move farther north or to the northeast.

Graphic: Overall Impacts, Threats & Timing For DC.

Residents of Florida's Panhandle frantically filled sandbags, boarded up homes and secured boats Monday as they anxiously awaited Hurricane Michael, which forecasters warned could smash into the state's Gulf Coast as a unsafe major hurricane within days.

The hurricane center on Sunday upgraded the tropical depression in the Caribbean to a named tropical storm, saying it had winds of up to 40 miles per hour (65 kph).

Graphic: Tropical Watches and Warnings. It's too early for a definitive forecast, but now it appears the system will continue to move north into the Gulf through the day Sunday and come close to the Louisiana and Mississippi Gulf Coast before shifting east with an approaching cold front. Cedar Key to Chassahowitzka could see storm surge topping out between 4 to 6 feet.

Tropical Storm Michael formed Sunday morning in the Caribbean Sea and is forecast to strengthen into a hurricane over the next couple of days

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