A Look at Why Hurricane Michael Had a Remarkable, Devastating Run

The storm shocked forecasters by quickly intensifying then remaining strong for hours after landfall.

hurricane michael
Homes destroyed by Hurricane Michael are shown in this aerial photo on October 11, 2018, in Mexico Beach, Florida. (Chris O'Meara-Pool/Getty Images)
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A few days ago, Hurricane Michael was forecast to strike the Florida Panhandle as a relatively weak hurricane, and though dangerous, it was not meant to be historic. But instead, Michael will be remembered as one of the most damaging and powerful storms to ever hit the continental United States, reports The Atlantic. 

Michael came ashore Wednesday afternoon as a powerful Category 4 hurricane, and slashed a path of near-total destruction across the Florida Panhandle and into southeastern Georgia. The Atlantic writes that the storm’s freakishly low pressure and sustained but brutal winds, which peaked at 155 miles per hour, flattened neighborhoods, snapped trees, and left hundreds without power. At least six people died, according to officials.

From the moment it made landfall, Michael became one of the four strongest hurricanes in history, and its winds were only outmatched by the three Category 5 storms to ever strike the U.S. mainland. Michael broke other records: Strongest hurricane to make landfall this late in the season, the third-strongest U.S. hurricane on record by pressure, and the strongest hurricane to strike Georgia directly in a dozen decades.

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