Hurricane Michael wreaked havoc in the Florida Panhandle on Wednesday, before touching down near Charlotte, North Carolina, on Thursday morning. The storm has since moved on to Georgia, and is expected to head northeast through the Carolinas and Virginia.
Officials report that two people have died as a result of Hurricane Michael, while hundreds of thousands have been left without power.
Though the hurricane has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, it has already wreaked havoc in many Florida Panhandle neighbourhoods.
Since the storm hit, residents of Panama City have seen their homes collapse, their roads flooded, and their storefront windows shattered. Officials say that four Florida hospitals have closed due to the storm, including two in Panama City, which have been forced to evacuate patients.
Take a look at the destruction captured by these before-and-after photos.
Before: Bo Lynn’s Grocery in Saint Marks, Florida
After: The market is submerged in water
Saints Marks witnessed minor flooding on Tuesday, which forced some roads to shut down. This included the only road that leads into and out of the town, which was blocked off ahead of the hurricane.
Before: The Cooter Stew Cafe in Saint Marks
After: The cafe begins to take on water
Businesses did their best to prepare for the storm by moving furniture. In 2005, the area fell victim to Hurricane Dennis, a Category 3 storm that killed 88 people.
Before: A pier in Panama City, Florida
After: The pier endures the outer bands of the hurricane
The hurricane made landfall just west of Panama City, which has been completely wiped out by the storm. Residents have been forced to evacuate, beachfront condos have been stripped of their roofs, and schools and hospitals have been torn apart.
Before: Downtown Panama City
After: Residents walk past damaged stores
Before: Harrison Ave in Panama City
After: The street is lined with rubble
Officials have instructed evacuees not to return to the city, which is still without power and phone service.
Before: The Shell Point Beach community in Crawfordville, Florida
After: The community is ravaged by floods and fallen trees
Like Saint Marks, Crawfordville residents saw their roads blocked off on Tuesday ahead of the storm. Many of the area’s coastal homes are weak or mobile structures, making them particularly vulnerable in a hurricane.
Before: An empty Shell Point Beach hours before the storm
After: Heavy winds strike the town’s beachfront properties
The surrounding county, Wakulla, has kept a list of people who chose not to evacuate. The sheriff’s office planned to check on them on Thursday.
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