Hurricane Michael was an Atlantic tropical cyclone. The storm threatened Cuba, northwestern Florida, Georgia and southern Alabama. Michael was the 13th named storm, seventh hurricane, and the second major hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season. It was the first Category 5 hurricane and the strongest on record to impact the Florida Panhandle, and was the fourth-strongest landfalling hurricane in the United States in terms of wind speed. As Michael became a Category 5 hurricane, the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season became a third consecutive season to feature at least one Category 5 hurricane since Matthew in 2016 and Irma in 2017; this also makes Michael the third straight "M" name to feature as a Category 5 hurricane since Matthew in 2016 and Maria in 2017 as well.
|Category 5 major hurricane (SSHWS/NWS)|
|Formed||October 7, 2018|
|Dissipated||October 16, 2018|
|(Extratropical after October 11)|
|Highest winds||1-minute sustained: 160 mph (260 km/h) |
|Lowest pressure||919 mbar (hPa); 27.14 inHg|
|Fatalities||31 direct, 43 indirect|
|Damage||$25.1 billion (2018 USD)|
|Areas affected||Central America, Yucatán Peninsula, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Southeastern United States (especially the Florida Panhandle and Georgia), Eastern United States, Eastern Canada, Iberian Peninsula|
|Part of the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season|
The storm passed near western Cuba on October 7-8.
Michael became a major hurricane on Tuesday, October 9, 2018.
The storm struck near Mexico Beach, Florida in the Florida Panhandle as a borderline Category 5 hurricane, which makes it the first tropical cyclone to make landfall in the United States as a Category 5 hurricane since Hurricane Andrew in 1992. It had a wind speed of 160 mph and a central pressure of 919 millibars. It was originally designated as a high-end Category 4 hurricane with wind speed of 155 mph, but from post-analysis, it was indeed a Category 5 hurricane as originally thought. It was said to be the strongest hurricane to hit Florida since Andrew in 1992 in terms of pressure which it had a central pressure of 922 millibars. It was also the the strongest hurricane to hit the United States in terms of pressure since Hurricane Camille in 1969, which had a pressure of 900 millibars.
On March 20, 2019, the World Meteorological Organization retired the name Michael due to extreme and very expensive damage it caused along its track, particularly in the Florida Panhandle and southwest Georgia, and it will never again be used for another Atlantic hurricane. It will be replaced with Milton for the 2024 season.
- "Hurricane Michael is Heading to Florida and the Southeast". Vox. Retrieved October 8, 2018.
- Hurricane Michael Becomes Category 3 Hurricane (Report). CBS News. Retrieved October 9, 2018.
- Beven II, Berg, Hagen, John L., Robbie, Andrew (19 April 2019). "Tropical Cyclone Report - Hurricane Michael" (PDF). National Hurricane Center.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- "Hurricane Michael Makes Landfall". The Guardian. Retrieved October 10, 2018.