Hurricane Michael builds strength, expected to strike Florida Wednesday

Track the storm here.

Note: This may not be the most recent forecast, please visit www.myfox8.com or open the FOX8 app for the very latest. 

The distance between Hurricane Michael and Florida is quickly shrinking as the storm builds power.

Maximum sustained wind speeds have picked up to 90 mph, as of the 5 a.m. Tuesday advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

The Category 1 storm is about 390 miles south of Apalachicola, Florida, and moving north-northwest at 12 mph.

The NHC expects the center of Hurricane Michael to cross onto the Florida Panhandle or Florida Big Bend Area on Wednesday.

As it makes landfall, Michael is expected to become a major hurricane.

The hurricane is expected to grow to a Category 2 on Tuesday before reaching a Category 3 near impact with the United States, said Meteorologist Emily Byrd of the FOX8 Max Weather Center.

By Wednesday night and Thursday, the storm will cut through the southeastern United States.

The hurricane is expected to maintain at least tropical storm level strength as it crosses Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina, according to Byrd.

"As Michael continues its trek across the Carolinas, rain will become steadier and heavier, especially during the day on Thursday," Byrd said. "Highs hold steadily in the mid-70s both days. A cold front will sweep Michael offshore northeastern North Carolina overnight Thursday into Friday morning."

 

Summary of watches and warnings in effect:

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...

  • Okaloosa/Walton County Line Florida to Anclote River Florida

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for...

  • Anclote River Florida to Anna Maria Island Florida, including Tampa Bay
  • Alabama/Florida border to Okaloosa/Walton County Line Florida

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for...

  • Alabama/Florida border to Suwannee River Florida

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for...

  • Alabama/Florida border to the Mississippi/Alabama border

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...

  • Alabama/Florida border to the Mississippi/Alabama border
  • Suwanee River Florida to Chassahowitzka Florida
  • The Cuban province of Pinar del Rio

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for...

  • Chassahowitzka to Anna Maria Island Florida, including Tampa Bay
  • Mississippi/Alabama border to the Mouth of the Pearl River
  • Fernandina Beach, Florida to South Santee River, South Carolina