First Warning Forecast: Tracking Hurricane Michael

Posted at 2:04 PM, Oct 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-08 14:04:21-04

Meteorologist Madeline Evans’ First Warning Forecast

We are seeing a mix of sun and clouds today with temperatures already in the low to mid 80s this afternoon. It will still be muggy today, so it will feel more like the upper 80s, low 90s. An isolated shower is possible this afternoon, but most areas will stay dry. We will be on the breezy side with wind from the east at 5-15 mph.

Tuesday and Wednesday will be very similar today. Highs will return to the mid 80s with a mix of clouds and rain chances will build to a 20% chance Tuesday, 30% chance Wednesday .

Michael is expected to make landfall near the Florida panhandle as a hurricane on Wednesday. Michael will likely weaken to a tropical storm and track up the East Coast Thursday and Friday. Based on the current forecast track, SE VA and NE NC can expect strong winds and rain by Thursday and into Friday. Winds will be near or just below tropical storm strength (39+ mph), building through Thursday and relaxing through Friday. Changes in the forecast track or timing would change our local impacts, which is very possible to change.

A big cold front will help to steer Michael off of the coast and bring in more fall-like conditions. High temperatures will drop into the low 70s this weekend with much lower humidity.

Today: Partly Cloudy, Isolated Showers (20%). Highs in the low to mid 80s. Winds: E 5-10

Tonight: Partly Cloudy. Lows in the low 70s. Winds: SE 5-10

Tomorrow: Mix of Clouds, Isolated Showers (20%). Highs in the low to mid 80s. Winds: SE 5-15

Weather & Health 

Pollen: Low-Medium (Ragweed, Grasses)

UV Index: 6 (High)

Air Quality: Good (Code Green)

Mosquitoes: Extreme

Today in Weather History (NWS Wakefield)

October 8th

1965 F1 Tornado: Wicomico Co

2005 Flash Flood: Southeast Virginia

2016 Heavy rain from Post Tropical Cyclone Matthew

Tropical Update

Michael strengthens to a hurricane as it approaches the Gulf of Mexico. Michael is centered about 50 miles south of western Cuba and moving north at 7 mph. On the forecast track, the center of Michael will move north near the western tip of Cuba this afternoon and into the southeastern Gulf of Mexico by tonight. Michael will move across the eastern Gulf of Mexico Tuesday and Tuesday night, and is expected to move inland over the Florida Panhandle or Florida Big Bend area on Wednesday, and then move northeast across the southeastern United States Wednesday night and Thursday.

Data from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that maximum sustained winds have increased to near 75 mph with higher gusts. Steady to rapid strengthening is forecast during the next day or so, and Michael is forecast to become a major hurricane by Tuesday or Tuesday night.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 30 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles.

11:00 AM EDT Mon Oct 8

Location: 21.2°N 84.9°W

Moving: N at 7 mph

Min pressure: 982 mb

Max sustained: 75 mph

We are watching an area of low pressure several hundred miles south of the Cabo Verde Islands. Shower and thunderstorm activity has become more concentrated since last night, and a tropical depression could form during next few days while it moves WNW. By late this week, however, upper-level winds are expected to become unfavorable for development.

* Formation chance through 48 hours: Medium (50%).

* Formation chance through 5 days: Medium (60%).

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