Killer Hurricane Matthew approaches Florida
Washington DC: A strong storm with about 140 mph winds is expected to hit Florida Thursday or early Friday, forcing hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.
The hurricane is a Category-4 storm and predicted to strengthen further to Category-5, and the storm threatens further damage up the East Coast to South Carolina and Georgia.
“The storm will kill you. Time is running out,” said Rick Scott, governor of Florida, in a briefing. Earlier, he asked President Obama to announce the state of Florida as a federal emergency state.
“If you are in an evacuation zone, evacuate now,” Scott said. “We are preparing for the worst and hoping for the best and no one should take any chances.”
Evacuate, evacuate, evacuate, he said.
Last week, the storm devastated Haiti on its way, killing about 108, and six at other places on its way. The storm is considered to be the most dangerous in the recent decades.
In Florida, evacuation is made mandatory. Thousands of people have hit the roads to travel to the Northern regions. Scores of people are taking refuge in hotel rooms leaving their homes behind. Traffic delays have been a major problem for many evacuators.
Those who had decided to stay back despite the warnings are bracing for the storm. People are forming lines in front of gas stations and grocery stores. Many of the houses are protected with wooden blocks covering the windows and doors. Officials are planning to protect old buildings of the cities by covering them with turfs and other materials.
300 killed in Haiti
About 5,000 flights have been cancelled, winds reached 150 mph in Florida, 2 million people have been evacuated, and more than 300 people have been killed in Haiti due to Hurricane Matthew.