WHNT NEWS 19 — With Hurricane Matthew rapidly approaching the east coast, we’ll be posting the latest impacts and updates here.
The National Hurricane Center indicates that Hurricane Matthew made landfall in the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge near McClellanville, SC around 10:45 a.m. EDT.
As of 7:00 a.m. – Matthew is a Category 1 hurricane with sustained winds of 85 mph. The storm is sitting just off the coast of South Carolina and will continue to hug the coast tightly as it moves north towards North Carolina this afternoon/evening. Hurricane warnings remain posted from Savannah, GA to Wilmington, NC; tropical storm warnings remain in effect for the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
Heavy rains and winds have caused crews to close a section of Interstate 95 in southern South Carolina. The highway was closed in Jasper County between Ridgeland and Hardeeville.
Hurricane Matthew is now a Category 2 storm with maximum sustained winds of 110 mph, the National Hurricane Center said in its 5 pm ET update. Matthew is forecast to continue being a formidable hurricane as it approaches the coasts of Georgia and the Carolinas in the next few days.
CNN: An 82-year-old man and a woman in her 60s have died during Hurricane Matthew, according to the Lucie County Fire Department and a spokeswoman at the Volusia County Community Information Center. There are now three storm-related deaths in Florida.
NASA spokesperson George Diller says Kennedy Space Center has been spared major damage. Recovery team members won’t be out in full force until Saturday, but a preliminary inspection showed limited roof and door damage and some water intrusion.
(AP)-U.S. military assets are heading to Haiti to provide assistance after Hurricane Matthew killed hundreds of people. Nine military helicopters have arrived or will arrive later Friday. 250 U.S. troops are in Haiti and another 100 could go in the next day or so.
Alabama Governor Robert Bentley issues state of emergency to help evacuees coming into state because of hurricane. The Alabama Department of Public Health is predicting a significant number of displaced people who will travel to the state.
Local officials: Hurricane Matthew death toll in Haiti rises to 842.
HURRICANE MATTHEW TROPICAL CYCLONE UPDATE
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL142016
700 AM EDT FRI OCT 07 2016
…7 AM EDT POSITION UPDATE…
…WESTERN EDGE OF MATTHEW’S EYEWALL CONTINUES TO BRUSH CAPE
During the past hour, a wind gust of 107 mph (170 km/h) occurred on
the tip of Cape Canaveral.
President Barack Obama declares state of emergency for Georgia. He already issued states of emergency for Florida and South Carolina.
(AP)-Officials say winds are picking up and thousands are without power in Florida as Hurricane Matthew approaches. The National Hurricane Center says the eye of Matthew is northwest of Grand Bahama Island, about 70 miles east of West Palm Beach Florida. A wind gust of 50 mph has been recorded at Palm Beach International Airport. Florida Power & Light says more than 30,000 customers, are already without electricity.
283 now killed in Haiti from Hurricane Matthew, according according to Haiti’s minister of the interior.
264 dead in Haiti after Hurricane Matthew, per Haiti’s Civil Protection Service.
“We are already starting to see the impacts (from Hurricane Matthew), and it’s a monster,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott says. Scott tells residents in evacuation zones to go inland. “You still have time to leave. Get out. There’s no reason to take a chance.”
Governor Robert Bentley announced that Alabama is sending state personnel and resources to Florida to assist with hurricane response efforts.
So far assistance has been requested from the Alabama National Guard, Alabama Emergency Management Agency (AEMA) and the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC).
Local National Weather Service Offices are using extremely strong language to convey the serious danger Matthew poses to Florida.
At the Kennedy Space Center in central Florida, NASA and the private company SpaceX are taking precautions to protect their capsules and rockets.
NASA has secured a new Orion capsule currently in development in a secure Kennedy building designed to withstand sustained wind of 114 mph and gusts of 125 mph.
NASA’s Kennedy Space Center is closed Thursday and Friday, with a 116-person ride-out crew on duty to help keep things safe.
Huntsville Utilities’ Electric Department will send two
crews to assist in South Carolina with Hurricane Matthew efforts. They will go to the Conway/Myrtle Beach area.
The HU crews are expected to begin assisting with recovery and restoration on Saturday
morning. Based on the weather and recovery
efforts following Hurricane Matthew, HU Crews will work approximately one week
in South Carolina before returning to Huntsville.
Charleston, SC mayor: Everyone needs to leave town as Hurricane Matthew approaches. During news conference Thursday afternoon, John Tecklenburg asked residents to pack up what they need, secure their property and get out of town.
Matthew’s winds will cause devastating, if not catastrophic, damage along Florida’s east coast. Sustained winds along the Space Coast may exceed 115 miles per hour for multiple hours before sunrise Friday.
With dangerous Hurricane Matthew approaching Florida’s coastline, officials at Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and SeaWorld say they’ll be shutting down until the storm passes.
Disney officials said on the company’s website Thursday afternoon that theme parks, water parks, Disney Springs, the miniature golf course and the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex would close at 5 p.m. The theme park will remain closed through Friday.
Airlines are canceling hundreds of flights as Hurricane Matthew pelts the Florida coast with high winds and heavy rain.
The Fort Lauderdale airport shut down on Thursday morning, and farther north the Orlando airport expected to do the same by nighttime.
President Barack Obama has declared an emergency in the state of Florida and has ordered federal aid to supplement state, tribal, and local response efforts to Hurricane Matthew.
Emergency declarations are designed to help provide emergency services to protect lives and property, and to lessen the threat of a catastrophe.