Hurricanes

Update as of 10 AM Friday:

The National Hurricane Center briefly upped the development chances of the tropical wave in the eastern Atlantic to a "high chance" as of its Thursday afternoon outlook. The agency says there is a "medium chance" of development over the weekend or early next week based on its 8 AM ET outlook issued on Friday. Regardless of development, it is likely to stay over the open tropical ocean next week.

Melissa Ross

This month, First Coast Connect host Melissa Ross traveled to Rhode Island for a fellowship for journalists to learn about the science of climate change. 

Ryan Benk

The state of Florida hasn't been hit with a hurricane in more than a decade, and that has state emergency managers concerned residents might not be prepared for the worst.


Ryan Benk

Florida emergency officials are in the midst of planning for the upcoming hurricane season — and they’re getting some help from an unexpected source.

A group of college students are learning how to use drones to aid in disaster recovery efforts.


Anna Vignet for Reveal

Texas is home to the Houston Ship Channel, one of the world’s busiest maritime waterways. Also in Houston, and along the channel, are oil refineries and chemical plants that make up the nation’s largest refining and petrochemical complex. It’s a major economic hub.

 But what would happen to the area if a major hurricane hit? 

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

Experts at the present time seem confident Hurricane Joaquin won't make landfall along the First Coast, but that doesn't mean the area will be free from some gnarly weather.

The Coast Guard is warning swimmers about dangerous rip currents in hopes of clearing Florida’s beaches.

But that warning is more of a call to action for some beachgoers.

Independent Living Center

Jacksonville residents are bracing for the possibility of a Category 1 hurricane. Many are buying water and stocking up on batteries.

For people living with disabilities, preparation involves more steps.

The Independent Living Resource Center has a new guide to help them keep an emergency from becoming a tragedy.


Peter Haden / WJCT News

Aircraft from the United States Air Force Reserve’s “Hurricane Hunters” unit were at the Northeast Florida Regional Airport in St. Augustine Thursday. The unit collects data in real time that is used by emergency managers and meteorologists to track storms and warn the public.  

The “Hurricane Hunters,” who are based at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi, fly a 700-ton cargo plane directly into the eye of a hurricane in the name of science.

NOAA

TALLAHASSEE (The News Service of Florida) — An extra charge on property-insurance and auto-insurance policies to cover claims paid for the 2004 and 2005 hurricane seasons will end Jan. 1.

The Hurricane Lady, Hobby Lobby and Success Kid were among our top stories this week.

Hurricane Arthur, Duval County Public Schools, and Sheriff Rick Beseler are in the headlines today.

Courtesy of Joy Batteh-Freiha

A statue that has resided in St. Augustine for more than 150 years may help shed light on the history of some of the First Coast’s earliest residents, and why some believe the area tends to stay unscathed by hurricanes.

Jeff Huffman

Very warm waters and relatively light winds aloft will yield an environment favorable for tropical storm development just offshore of Florida’s Atlantic Coast in the next 48 hours.

Alex Pellom / Twitter

Federal forecasters are predicting a slower than usual Atlantic hurricane season this year, but officials warn that it only takes one storm to cause widespread damage and death. 

Carter Roush / WJCT

A Hurricane disaster kit is not something you should be scrambling to assemble as a hurricane makes landfall.

When a hurricane is approaching, everyone needs to have a plan in place. When you have medical needs, that preparation becomes even more critical.

Dr. Theo Sai is the chief medical officer for senior products for Humana in Central Florida.  He's also lived through several hurricanes.  

“I remember the worst one for me was in the Bahamas, where I was on the first floor and it was a pretty bad hurricane, and Nassau typically floods a lot,” Said said.

When he offers advice on preparing for hurricanes, it comes from his own experience.

Marissa Alexander, Jacksonville Jaguars, medical marijuana, and Ashley Nicole Chiasson are in the headlines today.

Alex Pellom / Duval County Emergency Management

With hurricane season here, state emergency officials are urging anyone with mobility or health problems to register with local officials for extra help during an emergency evacuation.

Florida Retail Federation

There are only three days left for Florida residents to stock up on emergency items like batteries and generators and not have to pay sales tax on them.

The 2014 Atlantic hurricane season is now officially upon us. And it comes in the midst of a historic lull.

Time explains that it's been 3,142 days since a Category 3 hurricane or stronger made landfall in the United States. The last one was Hurricane Wilma, which at its peak had winds of 185 mph and made landfall in Florida in 2005.

"That's an unprecedented streak, going back to 1900—the longest drought before the current one was nearly 1,000 days shorter," Time goes on.

NASA / Wikimedia Commons

A new survey by the Automobile Club of America finds that Category 3 hurricanes seem to be the evacuation threshold for the majority of Floridians.

Carter Roush / WJCT

Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown has officially released the city's first updated evacuation map since 2005.

Lenny Curry, Escambia County Jail, and Jameis Winston are in the headlines today.

The Mayo Clinic, the Southbank Riverwalk, and hurricanes are in the headlines today.

One Spark, black bears, and El Niño are in the headlines today.

Onnika Fisher, unemployment claims, and the Jacksonville Jaguars are in the headlines today.

After Hurricane Sandy, the south shore of Staten Island looked like it had been hit by a tsunami. The storm surge devastated whole neighborhoods suddenly, in a matter of hours. In the year since the storm, some families have been rebuilding their homes and their lives. Others are ready to sell their flood-damaged properties and move on.

Joe Salluzzo lives in a neighborhood called New Dorp Beach, a few blocks from the ocean. He rode out the storm on the second story of his brick bungalow, which he's been repairing himself ever since.

LinkedIn

Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown has appointed a veteran of  Federal Emergency Management Agency to lead Duval County's Emergency Management Division.

Steven Woodard also spent 20 years in the U.S. Secret Service.

Woodard says Jacksonville's emergency responders have an excellent reputation. He served in leadership roles for more than 60 events including Super Bowl XXXVI, the United Nations General Assembly and the first inauguration of President George W. Bush.

As Tropical Storm Karen strengthens on it's way towards the U.S. Gulf Coast, where it's expected to make landfall sometime this weekend, the Florida National Guard is recalling some personnel who were furloughed due to the federal government shutdown to plan for potential storm impacts.

Lt. Col. James Evans, director of public affairs for the Florida National Guard, said that of the state's approximately 2,000 full-time guardsmen about half are furloughed due to the shutdown.

The season’s tenth named storm of the season, Tropical Storm Jerry, formed in the central Atlantic Monday morning. However, a weaker disturbance over the Caribbean is more worth Floridian’s attention. Keeping with trend for much of the 2013 Hurricane Season, though, development of this feature would likely be slow to occur or might not even happen at all. Nonetheless, the system’s close proximity to land and possible movement into the Gulf of Mexico increases the chances that it could impact portions of the United States or Florida over the weekend or early next week.

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