Flagler County is still paying the millions in bills from Hurricanes Matthew and Irma, and the state is recovering from a direct hit from a Cat 5 last year, costing $26 billion, as the 2019 hurricane season begins.
Weather and Climate
The Storm Prediction Center is projecting an “enhanced risk” of severe storms for the majority of northeast Florida today, with Flagler County in the squall line mostly between 3 and 6 p.m.
Threats to Flagler were lessening as the day progressed, but there were local repercussions, with downed trees and concerns about flooding.
The Florida National Guard has deployed 3,500 members for search-and-rescue and humanitarian aid, with assistance from National Guard units from as far away as New York and Kansas.
The storm is expected to speed through the Panhandle before moving into the Atlanta area and the Carolinas, Flagler County’s Suzanne Eubanks on Tuesday was deployed to go into Holmes County as part of the state’s Region 3 All Hazards Incident Management Team.
Current bulletins from the National Weather Service for Flagler County include a high risk for rip currents, a high surf advisory, and a coastal flood advisory. The risk of tropical storm force winds has decreased to 20 percent.
Michael has the potential to be the strongest storm in the region since Hurricane Eloise swept across Bay County in September 1975 with 110 mph winds.
Though distant, what will become Tropical Storm Michael is expected to bring waves of heavy rainfall and embedded thunderstorms beginning Tuesday and persisting through late Thursday in the northeast Florida region.
CodeRed users and others must enroll in Flagler County’s new AlertFlagler emergency notification system for weather, law enforcement and other critical events.
With Hurricane Florence’s effects causing possible erosion locally, Flagler County officials are on the alert for any breaches along the coast, where the year-long dune-rebuilding project is still ongoing.