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‘Catastrophic’ Michael’s path: What does tropical storm warning mean for Columbus?

Weather officials are calling Hurricane Michael “catastrophic” as the Category 4 storm approaches landfall on the Florida Panhandle, but west Georgia will also feel the effects of the storm.

Michael is expected to impact Columbus and surrounding areas in Georgia and east Alabama.

“HURRICANE MICHAEL WILL POTENTIALLY BE A HISTORIC TROPICAL EVENT FOR CENTRAL AND EAST GEORGIA!” National Weather Service Atlanta tweeted.

Michael could potentially pack hurricane-force winds when the storm moves over Middle Georgia late Wednesday, and Columbus was placed under a tropical storm warning by 12:30 p.m.

What does a tropical storm warning mean for residents in Columbus?

Here’s more from the National Weather Service:

  • Columbus has the potential to feel wind gusts from 58-73 mph
  • The wind damage could be significant to life and property.
  • Columbus residents should seek shelter during Michael and be prepared for wind damage to roofing and siding material, along with possible damage to awnings, porches, carports and sheds.
  • Mobile homes in Columbus and surrounding areas could see significant damage, especially if they are not anchored.
  • Trees could be snapped or uprooted in tropical storm-force winds. Debris could litter the roadway, blocking traffic.
  • Columbus could see 3 to 6 inches of rain. A flash food watch is in effect.
  • Heed any flood watches and warnings.
  • Moderate rainfall and flooding could prompt rescues and evacuations.
  • Rivers may become swollen, have swifter currents and overspill banks in vulnerable spots.
  • The National Weather Service says the weather situation is “somewhat favorable” for tornadoes.
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