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*For Educational Purposes Only*

Hurricane categories Hurricanes are ranked one to five, according to the Saffir-Simpson scale of strength:

Category 1: Hurricane has central pressure of 28.94 inches or more and winds of 74 to 95 mph, is accompanied by a 4- to 5-foot storm surge and causes minimal damage.

Category 2: Pressure 28.50 to 28.93 inches, winds from 96 to 110 mph, storm surge 6 to 8 feet, damage moderate.

Category 3: Pressure 27.91 to 28.49 inches, winds from 111 to 130 mph, storm surge nine to 12 feet, damage extensive.

Category 4: Pressure 27.17 to 27.90 inches, winds from 131 to 155 mph, storm surge 13 to 18 feet, damage extreme.

Category 5: Pressure less than 27.17 inches, winds greater than 155 mph, storm surge higher than 18 feet, damage catastrophic.

Source: http://www.tampabayonline.net/news/news100z.htm

-- Stan Faryna (info@giglobal.com), September 14, 1999



Cocoa Beach residents: 'We're out of here' Source: http://www.tampabayonline.net/news/news1010.htm

COCOA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Jeff and Robin Ellenburg are veterans of natural disasters. They lived in Washington state when Mount St. Helens erupted, and stuck it out in Los Angeles during the 1994 earthquake.

But as Hurricane Floyd barreled toward the Florida coast and this beach community, the Ellenburgs - like most others in this beach community - weren't taking any chances.

``We're out of here,'' said Ellenburg, who planned to go to Tampa with his wife and their 4-year-old daughter, Bayley, to ride out Floyd's fury.

All over Cocoa Beach on Monday, stores and restaurants were boarded up with plywood and normally clogged roads were thin with traffic as residents obeyed a mandatory evacuation order.

Forecasters said Floyd - one of the most powerful storms ever to threaten the United States - could make landfall in the next couple of days between central Florida and South Carolina.

``We're going to go away for a few days and come back and see what's left,'' Ellenburg said Monday, packing his car with computers, televisions, clothes and pictures.

Cocoa Beach was like a ghost town late Monday as hotels and shops were shuttered and the Cocoa Beach Pier was roped off from visitors.

Ron Jon Surf Shop, famous for being open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, was closed and sandbags packed around its glass doors.

A sign in the window at the Days Inn read, ``Sorry, we are closed for Floyd.'' Three maintenance golf carts were placed in the hotel lobby for safekeeping.

Coastal residents from Miami to Daytona Beach were urged to evacuate Monday as well as those in low-lying areas and in mobile or manufactured homes.

Brevard County residents who stayed would not be fined, but they wouldn't receive any help from policeman or firefighters should they want to be evacuated later, said Joan Heller, a county spokeswoman.

Jerry Sale, owner of Pete's Pawn Shop and East Coast Music on Route A1A, boarded up his store, located about a block from the beach, with metal shutters and was making plans to drive north.

``I'm a Florida native. I've lived here all my life,'' he said. ``I've never run from a hurricane, but if this one looks like it's going to land, I'm out of here.''

Dmitri Zourdos used an electric drill to attach plywood to the front door of his Sunrise Restaurant Diner in Cocoa Beach.

``I'm scared,'' Zourdos said. ``I hope I'm doing this all for nothing.''

Nearby Port Canaveral was ordered closed and the port's 200 ships were ordered to evacuate. Unlike during Hurricane Dennis last month, shrimpers and fisherman were heeding the order. The port authority also planned to issue fines of $1,000 per hour to any violators starting today at 5 p.m.

Still, some residents were taking a wait-and-see attitude Monday.

``It's a big storm,'' said Sal Salvaggio, sipping a bottle of beer and smoking a cigarette in his front yard. ``But I'll evaluate the situation in the morning.''

-- Stan Faryna (info@giglobal.com), September 14, 1999.

[ Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only ]



Florida braces for worst as hurricane stalks coast


A bit of good news this morning: Forecasters say Hurricane Floyd has began its long-anticipated turn and its lethal core almost certainly will remain at sea and bypass Miami-Dade and Broward counties.

But grave danger still existed all along the Florida coast and all the way to the Carolinas. Floyd still could come within 20 miles of the coast tonight or Wednesday near Cape Canaveral, and then it will menace Georgia and the Carolinas.

The tiniest error in that forecast would bring the lethal core of this mammoth hurricane to one of the most heavily developed, densely populated regions of the United States.

And Floyd was much more than its core. One of the largest, most powerful storms on record, its hurricane-force winds stretched 125 miles in all directions.

In response, authorities haunted by the specter of sweeping calamity monitored the final phase of an unprecedented evacuation: Everyone living along Florida's Atlantic coast from Miami-Dade County to the Georgia border has been ordered to flee.

"All preparations should be rushed to completion in the warning area,'' John Guiney, a forecaster at the National Hurricane Center in west Miami-Dade, said this morning.

Residents streamed off beaches and barrier islands. Schools closed in Broward, Miami-Dade and many other counties. Gasoline pumps and supplies of bottled water ran dry. Accidents and heavy traffic jammed roads. Airlines canceled flights. Bridges were locked down, phone lines and Web sites jammed.

Nearly 1.3 million people were ordered to leave Miami Beach and Key Biscayne; portions of Hallandale, Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale; and many other cities along 350 miles of coastline.

Countless others in South Florida and around the state spent the night bolting storm shutters to windows, gathering friends and relatives close, watching, hoping, praying that this monstrous storm would veer away.

''It's scary,'' said Gov. Jeb Bush, who declared a state of emergency. ''It's very scary.''

Floyd propelled winds of 155 mph, capable of catastrophic damage. It was whipping up a storm surge -- a tidal wave -- 15 to 20 feet high, plus battering waves. It could dump eight to 10 inches of rain.

All day, all night and again this morning, Floyd remained a borderline, top-of-the-scale Category 5 storm capable of bulldozing any area it directly strikes. Tip to tip, it was 700 miles wide. A sense of looming dread prevailed.

''We're praying for you -- does that help?'' James Lee Witt, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said during a video conference call with emergency managers.

Disaster team

FEMA dispatched a 29-member team of disaster specialists to Atlanta, where emergency food, medical and housing supplies, generators and other equipment, were stockpiled. More than 100 tons of ice and 30,000 rolls of plastic sheeting were ready.

Tolls were lifted on state roads to speed the coastal exodus. The National Guard mustered on alert for the aftermath.

By early today, 1,341 people found refuge in 11 Broward shelters. A total of 3,259 people checked in to 14 Miami-Dade shelters.

This morning, forecasters hope, Floyd finally will begin the long-anticipated, gradual turn to the north that could save South Florida from enduring a repeat of the 1992 Hurricane Andrew disaster.

If the northerly turn does not take hold by noon today, South Florida could be in grave trouble.

''This is a really intense beast,'' said Jerry Jarrell, director of the National Hurricane Center in west Miami-Dade. ''This is enough to really scare us out of our wits.

''You have an absolute catastrophe out there heading in this direction. If it doesn't turn, we could all get hammered. If you are not prepared, it could cost you your life.''

Floyd was huge, so big and powerful that it seemed to create its own surrounding environment, seemed to defy sophisticated computer models employed to predict its course.

Too close for comfort

Even that predicted path carried Floyd too close for comfort to Florida, and that left those 1.3 million coastal residents confronting a ghastly choice this morning:

Seek shelter inland or stake their confidence -- and their lives -- on forecasts that it will turn away at the final hour and only brush the state.

Many chose to stay. Many chose to leave.

Based on the number of people subject to the orders, state officials said it could be one of the largest instant evacuations in U.S. history.

''You've got population centers from Miami Beach to Jacksonville,'' said Skip Dugger of the state's Division of Emergency Services.

Forecasters called it absolutely necessary.

Floyd was so large that its hurricane force winds stretched for 125 miles, the distance from Miami to Vero Beach. Its tropical force winds stretched for 260 miles, the distance from Fort Lauderdale to St. Augustine.

Three states northward

Even three states northward, emergency officials spoke in shocked superlatives.

''This storm has the potential to do an incredible amount of damage to our state,'' said Richard Moore, secretary of North Carolina's Department of Crime Control and Public Safety. ''He's huge. He's fast. And he's mean.''

A hurricane warning -- meaning that hurricane conditions were expected by 5 p.m. today -- extended from Florida City in South Dade to beyond the Georgia border. A tropical storm warning was posted for the Florida Keys from Marathon north to the county line.

Under the best circumstances, tropical-storm force conditions -- winds of 39 mph or more and three to five inches of rain -- were expected to arrive in South Florida about 8 a.m. today, hurricane-force winds of 74 mph or more could rock Central and North Florida by Wednesday.

''If this thing parallels us, it could act like a Weed-eater going up the coast,'' said Craig Fugate of the Florida Emergency Operations Center in Tallahassee. ''It's going to be pretty devastating.''

Dade Evacuations

Keenly aware of that, Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas announced the mandatory evacuation of 272,000 people from Miami Beach, Key Biscayne and other coastal areas -- and the residents of all mobile homes.

He also called for the voluntary evacuation of 213,000 people living east of Biscayne Boulevard and U.S. 1.

Fourteen shelters opened at 6 p.m., and more might open later.

''This is a very serious storm,'' Penelas said. ''We must take action. We must prepare for the worst, and pray for the best.''

All 313 Miami-Dade schools serving 350,000 students were closed. An announcement will made this afternoon concerning future plans.

Penelas told all nonessential county employees to stay home today. He urged private employers to do the same.

Broward evacuations

In Broward, officials ordered the mandatory evacuation of coastal areas and mobile home parks. Also ordered evacuated were people who had previously registered as having special needs. The mandate affected 250,000 people, but county officials said there were no plans to forcibly remove those who refused to comply.

County Commission Chairwoman Ilene Lieberman said Broward essentially would be shut for business today. The school district canceled classes. Government offices and facilities such as libraries were closed. Trash pickup has been suspended.

Government officials weren't they only ones taking Floyd seriously.

Developers of the massive, oceanfront Diplomat Resort & Country Club in Hollywood had a Herculean task: Securing a $600 million work site that was basically a mountain of projectiles waiting to happen.

Workers using 300-foot cranes rapidly removed loose debris, exterior scaffolding and dry wall. The cranes will stay; the developer says they are designed to tilt with the wind.

Congestion and chaos

Congestion and near chaos ruled at many stores, including the Publix supermarket on Hollywood's Young Circle.

Bread and batteries were sought like jewels. By noon, the store's stock of bottled water was gone. Shoppers jostled to get by one another, carts nearly locked together.

''We need traffic signals here,'' Michael Mangual said.

Hospitals also prepared for an onslaught.

At Broward General Medical Center, employees emphasized that though a hospital might seem a safe place to weather the storm, it is only for the sick.

''We are not a shelter,'' said spokeswoman Sara Howley.

And shelter was precisely what much of the state needed this morning.

Herald staff writers Lisa Arthur, Brad Bennett, Karen Branch, Jennifer Babson, Tyler Bridges, Alfonso Chardy, Jacqueline Charles, Susan Cocking, Frank Davies, Marika Lynch, Gail Epstein Nieves, Steve Harrison, Caroline Keough, Allison Klein, Phil Long, Arnold Markowitz, Diana Marrero, Ivonne Perez, Shari Rudavsky, Mark Silva, Sabrina Walters and Mark Washburn contributed to this report.


-- Ashton & Leska in Cascadia (allaha@earthlink.net), September 14, 1999.

I'm only just starting to follow this up, it looks bad and I sympathise with you all. It's getting virtually no mention here in Australia. I'm apalled at the parochial nature of the media, both here and in the USA. We've had something of a crisis here over the past few days, I admit it's had a mention on this board, but I get the impression that it's had little mainstream attention in the USA. Search any engine for "East Timor" or "Indonesia" on this board's "Recent Answers", if you wonder what it is.

I can't imagine what life would be like without the web now, I pretty much couldn't imagine it. We make our own news, in a way. Never before, I think, have ordinary people had the ability to scutinise official documents the way we have done with Y2K papers. It's just got to be the greatest blow for true freedom of all time.

I want to get back to monitoring Floyd now, I can do it as well from Australia as you can in the States,which is unbelievable to me , but I promise I'll butt out if see any contention for resources with folks who might really need it.

Good Luck from Australia


-- Ron Davis (rdavis@ozemail.com.au), September 14, 1999.

At least this is one potential disaster we can't blame on Clinton (can we?). But the thought of a million or so basically "average Joes" evacuating and facing this is sobering.

One line from one of the stories struck me though:

"Plan as if this hurricane is going to hit you,'' National Hurricane Center Deputy Director Max Mayfield told Floridians. ''The penalty for not preparing is too great.''

Reminds me of some other advice, often ridiculed, regarding another potential disaster I've heard of ........

-- Jon Johnson (narnia4@usa.net), September 14, 1999.

I'm by no means an expert but the projected path of this storm is to go right up the Florida coast just offshore? Isn't that exactly where the gulfstream is located? The WARMEST waters of the Atlantic! Doesn't a Hurricane FEED off warm waters?

Almost a cat.5 and hasn't even hit the gulfstream yet and it going to follow the gulfstream all the way up thecoast to North and South Carolina.

You ain't seen nothing yet!

-- Johnny (JLJTM@BELLSOUTH.NET), September 14, 1999.

My heart goes to everyone in Floyd's path. Hang in there preppers! I'm following your updates on Chuck's thread.

BTW, I lost all of my bookmarks, does anyone have a URL for the weather service and satellite pix tracking the hurricane?

-- Chris (#$%^&@pond.com), September 14, 1999.

Ms. Chris,



-- sweetolebob (buffgun@hotmail.com), September 14, 1999.

''You have an absolute catastrophe out there heading in this direction. If it doesn't turn, we could all get hammered. If you are not prepared, it could cost you your life.''

Words... for Y2K as well.


Bunch of URLs on this thread...

OT Bad boys bad boys, whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when Floyd comes for you?

http://www.greenspun.com/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id= 001Oev

Heres hoping Floyd turns! (Put your consciousness on that thought!)


-- Diane J. Squire (sacredspaces@yahoo.com), September 14, 1999.

Thank you sweetolebob,

The TV is broken and that was just what I was looking for. We are a good ways from the coast, but then Hugo didn't seem to mind about that too much did he Old Git? :-)

-- Lilly (homesteader145@yahoo.com), September 14, 1999.

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