Infrared Loop Courtesy: National Hurricane Center/NOAA
The National Hurricane Center says Hurricane Matthew’s outer bands are already approaching Florida. “The severe hurricane is approaching Andros Islands in the Bahamas. Matthew remainsl a category 3 hurricane as it aims toward Florida’s east coast, Georgia and the Carolinas.
Florida Governor Rick Scott declared a State of Emergency in all Florida counties and asked President Obama for federal disaster relief and to provide food and tarps as Floridians prepare. The governor also suspended all tolls for the mass evacuation of 1.5 million Floridians ordered to evacuate. The east coast of Florida is under a hurricane warning.
2,500 National Guard members are now evacuated and 84 shelters will be open today, Governor Scott said.
“We don’t have much time left…expect a hit in Palm Beach….No excuses, get out,” Governor Scott said.
Hurricane Matthew is forecast to become a Category 4 hurricane as it approaches Florida. It’s expected to turn north-northwest tonight, according to the National Hurricane Center.
“There are no excuses….evacuate, evacuate, evacuate,” Governor Scott said during this morning’s storm briefing broadcast live statewide.
“This is serious….Don’t trust this track. Don’t take a chance,” Governor Scott said. “Do not surf. This will kill you,” Scott said about the high waves and storm surge forecast for the east coast of Florida.
“If you’re on the East coast, you’re going to lose power,” Governor Scott warned.
The National Hurricane Center says Hurricane Matthew will travel close up along the east coast of Florida tonight through Friday night, the NHC projects.
Here is the latest National Hurricane Center/NOAA forecast track:
From the National Hurricane Center, as of 10 a.m. Eastern Time:
SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:
A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* Central Bahamas, including Long Island, Exuma, Rum Cay,
San Salvador, and Cat Island
* Northwestern Bahamas, including the Abacos, Andros Island,
Berry Islands, Bimini, Eleuthera, Grand Bahama Island, and
* North of Golden Beach Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia
* Lake Okeechobee
A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…
* North of Altamaha Sound to South Santee River South Carolina
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Chokoloskee to Golden Beach
* Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge eastward
* Florida Bay
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for…
* North of Chokoloskee to Suwannee River
Interests elsewhere in the Florida Peninsula, the Florida Keys, and
in the Carolinas should monitor the progress of Matthew.
The NHC urges the public in inland areas of Florida to get local storm information issued by your local National Weather Service.