HURRICANE UPDATE: Hurricane Michael dangerous Cat 4

UPDATE: As of 10/10 at 6:30 a.m.

Hurricane Michael is now a very dangerous Cat 4 storm with maximum sustained winds at 140 mph and higher gusts at the center. On its present forecast track the storm is set to landfall somewhere near Panama City. Currently the hurricane is moving toward the north at 13 mph, but a shift to the NNE is expected before a NE turn. Our area remains under a hurricane warning.

Our area is already seeing some of the rainbands coming onshore. Conditions will deteriorate throughout the day but the arrival of winds will be in the next couple of hours.

There is no set time on the clock when bridges close, only when winds reach 39 mph sustained.

Navarre Press will keep you updated on any changes or information as needed.

UPDATE: As of 10/9 at 10 p.m.

As of the full 10 p.m. update little has changed, except that Hurricane Michael has once again strengthened and had maximum sustained winds at 125 mph.

Currently Hurricane Michael is moving North at 12 mph. Forecasters remain confident in a turn to the Northeast making landfall somewhere near Panama City. But it looks as if Hurricane Michael may come close before making the turn.

Navarre Press will continue to bring you updates as information becomes available.


UPDATE: As of 10/9 at 6:30 p.m.

Hurricane Michael remains a Cat 3 storm and according to the National Weather Service in Mobile, our area can expect Tropical Storm force winds late this evening at the earliest and most likely after midnight tonight and early morning Wednesday.

Our area has the potential for 58 to 73 mph winds. But Brad Baker, Emergency Management director says our area will more than likely see strong gusts as opposed to sustained winds. Landfall is still likely between Destin and Apalachicola. Regardless of the track, a High Risk of rip currents and very rough surf will impact the beaches of Alabama and Northwest Florida. Surf heights may increase to 10-15 feet tonight into Wednesday.

This information is for the forecast track as of now. Any shift in the track will determine impacts east and west of the storm.

Santa Rosa Emergency Management Office will remain activated for the duration of the storm.

Meteorologist Steve Miller from the National Weather Center says the timing of landfall is tomorrow mid-afternoon near Panama City.  “The highest winds for the Navarre area will be around noon tomorrow,” Miller said indicating forward motion of the storm has slowed. “Residents of Navarre should stay aware as Mother Nature is going to do what she is going to do. Any wobble to the west will change the forecast for Navarre.


UPDATE: As of 10/9 at 4 p.m.

Hurricane Michael has strengthened to Cat 3 status with winds at 120 mph as of the 4 p.m. update from the National Hurricane Center. Little change in the track was made as the storm sets its sight on the northern Gulf Coast. Hurricane Michael is showing signs of even more strengthening with deep convection and outflow from the center. Hurricane Michael is moving to the north and north-north west at 12 mph. All residents of Santa Rosa and Okaloosa Counties should pay very close attention. The timing of the turn the storm is supposed to make will be critical to the impacts felt in our area.

In addition to the closings listed below in earlier updates, Pensacola International Airport announced they will halt operations at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday morning until further updates are provided. The beach road, 399 heading from Navarre Beach to Pensacola Beach is closed until further notice. Col. Conley, 1 SOW Commander at Hurlburt Field reports all aircraft have been evacuated safely.

Tropical storm force winds should reach our area early Wednesday morning. The next intermediate advisory is at 7 p.m. with a full update at 10 p.m. We will continue to keep you updated. Also, follow our Facebook page for immediate updates on closings or other information.



UPDATE: As of 10/9 at 12 p.m.

Due to anticipated inclement weather conditions from Hurricane Michael, Naval Air Station Pensacola (NASP), Corry Station and Saufley Field will curtail normal operations and close the installations to all visitors and non-critical personnel at 2 p.m. today, Oct. 9, to include National Naval Aviation Museum, Lighthouse, Ft. Barrancas, etc. NASP Child Development Center, Youth Center, Navy Exchange and Commissary will close today at 6 p.m. All facilities on board the base will remain closed through Wednesday, Oct 10.  Pending significant changes in weather forecast, the base and all facilities will reopen and resume normal operations on Thursday, Oct 11th.

By order of the installation commander, Col. Michael Conley, Hurlburt Field will be closed at 6 p.m., Oct. 9, due to potential weather conditions from Hurricane Michael. All civilian employees and military members, except those in mission essential positions required to provide essential services, are excused from duty until further notice. Civilian employees and military members must stay in contact with their chain of command.

Wednesday’s scheduled Santa Rosa County Board of Commissioner’s meeting has been cancelled.

Evacuations have been ordered in Escambia County for Zone A beginning at noon today (Tuesday, Oct. 9) which includes Pensacola Beach and Perdido Key. If you live in a mobile home or have special needs, you should consider evacuation no matter the zone in which you live. Look up your zone at

Voluntary evacuations are in place for Navarre Beach, low-lying areas and mobile homes in Santa Rosa County.

Tuesday morning beachgoers were reporting coughing and respiratory issues commonly associated with Red Tide. These reports could not be confirmed through Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at this time.

Navarre hotels are reporting an influx of evacuees from Fort Walton, Okaloosa Island and as far east as Jacksonville. Hampton Inn General Manager Andy Peterson said Tuesday morning brought a wave of early cancellations followed by a wave of last minute reservations from folks seeking shelter.

“It has been non-stop up and down occupancy,” he said. “We have had more reservations that cancellations.”

At Best Western, General Manager Stace Holford said their reservations are 100 percent evacuees from Michael at this point.

“We will put roll aways in the meeting room if we have to to make sure everyone has somewhere safe to go,” she said.

The hotel has stocked up on additional water and food.

Days Inn and Suites is reporting they still have space for evacuees seeking shelter, and all three of the hotels are making allowances for pets as part of the evacuation effort.

Springhill Suites on the beach closed at noon, and is not scheduled to reopen until Thursday.


UPDATE: As of 10/9 at 9:30 a.m.

The forecast track for Hurricane Michael has put Santa Rosa County just outside the cone of uncertainty, but meteorologist Jack Cullen of the National Weather Service in Mobile says residents should still be watching. “One bump to the west will change the track.”

Overnight Hurricane Michael strengthened to Category 2 status and our area remains under a Hurricane Warning. When asked about the possibility of a westward shift, Cullen said, “You have to expect the unexpected.”

Schools are closed today and tomorrow. Hurlburt Field is operating on essential personnel only today and tomorrow.


Tom Thumb at Laredo and 87 is out of gas.

Tom Thumb at Highway 87 and 399 is out of gas.

Murphy USA at Walmart in Navarre has premium grade only.

Have no info on the Circle K in Navarre

Tom Thumb across from Sunrise Dr. in Navarre is out of gas.

There is another tanker truck scheduled for this afternoon to replenish gas at several locations.


LOCATION...24.5N 86.1W

UPDATE: As of 10/8 at 10 p.m.

The forecast track of Hurricane Michael has now shifted slightly to the east…but with all the shifting that has occurred today, stay tuned.

A Hurricane Warning remains in effect for our area as well as a Storm Surge Watch.

LOCATION...23.2N 85.3W


UPDATE: As of 10/8 at 6:51 p.m.

There has been a slight shift west again in the forecast track for Hurricane Michael. Here is new school closing and other important information:


  • Santa Rosa County Offices
    • Santa Rosa County BOCC, Clerk of Court, Tax Collector, Property Appraiser and Supervisor of Elections offices will close at noon Tues. and remain closed Wed. Offices will reopen Thurs.
  • Santa Rosa Court System
    • Santa Rosa County courts will close at noon Tues. and remain closed Wed. Offices will reopen Thurs.
  • City of Milton
    • City of Milton offices will be closed at noon Tues. for non-essential personnel and remain closed Wed. Offices will reopen Thurs.
  • Santa Rosa Public Schools
    • For Santa Rosa County parents and employees to make safe and timely preparations for the arrival of Hurricane Michael, the Santa Rosa County School District is announcing the following information. This information supersedes the release earlier today.
    • Due to the change in the forecast of Hurricane Michael, District schools and offices will be closed on Tues., Oct. 9. All school related activities on Tuesday must be concluded by noon.
    • District schools will be closed on Wed., Oct. 10. A decision regarding school-related afternoon and evening activities for Wed. will be made during the day on Wed.
    • A decision on school operation for Thurs., Oct. 11 will be announced on Wed.
    • Monitor the district website and local media outlets for updates, as any change to the current forecast track will necessitate changes to the current plan of action.
  • Pensacola State College
    • Based on a review of the latest weather forecast, PSC will close at noon on Tues., Oct. 9, and remain closed through Wed., Oct. 10. This closure includes all classes, evening classes, school activities, and online classes.  
    • At the present time, PSC is scheduled to resume normal operational hours on Thurs., Oct. 11.  If that should change, students, faculty, and staff will be notified through the PSC Alert System, social media, PSC website, and local media.
  • Council on Aging of West Florida
    • COAWF will suspend all services Wed., Oct. 10 including:
    • All senior dining sites in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties will be closed Wednesday.
    • The Retreat adult day care will be closed Wednesday.
    • Foster Grandparents and Senior Companions will not report to their schools or client homes Wednesday.
    • Meals on Wheels will not be delivered on Wednesday, but will be delivered on Thursday. Clients scheduled for Wednesday delivery will be notified about the delivery change.
    • The main Council on Aging office will be closed Wednesday, though the agency’s answering service will remain in operation, able to note questions and needs for service.
  • Gulf Islands National Seashore
    • Officials will begin shutdown procedures at the park’s island units to all visitor use and access starting tonight, October 8, due to the potential impacts from Hurricane Michael.
    • The Fort Pickens, Perdido Key, Santa Rosa, and Okaloosa Areas will close tonight at their normal operating time, and will not reopen tomorrow.  All campers in the park’s Fort Pickens Campground have been ordered to evacuate by 7 p.m. tonight, October 8.
    • The Fort Barrancas and Naval Live Oaks Areas will remain on their normal operating schedules at this time, but their status may change with conditions.
  • Florida Forestry Service
    • Florida Forest Service is shutting down its operations, offices, recreation and day-use areas in Escambia, Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties starting Tuesday. The closure will last through close of business Thursday.
  • Sacred Heart Clinic inside the Walgreens location in Navarre will be closed Tuesday.


UPDATE: As of 10/8 4 p.m.

A HURRICANE WARNING has been issued for our area, which means hurricane conditions are expected with the warned area (AL/FL border to Suwanee). A warning is typically issued 36 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical storm force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

As of the 4 p.m. update, Hurricane Michael has sustained winds of 80 mph with higher gusts. Rapid intensification is expected and could be a Category 3 or higher upon landfall.

In addition to the school information below, University of West Florida has announced they are closing at noon tomorrow (Tuesday) and reopening Thursday morning at 7:59 a.m. Pensacola State College will close at 4 p.m. tomorrow and reopen normal hours on Thursday.

All Navarre Beach Area Chamber of Commerce events scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday have been cancelled and Chamber offices will be closed those days as well.

Navarre Walmart has bare shelves…a representative says they may have a truck coming tomorrow.

Ace Hardware in Navarre has plenty of sandbags, propane, batteries and a few gas cans. They also have Ply-lox clips for your plywood. They have a truck coming tomorrow so supplies will be refreshed.

Tom Thumb at Laredo and Highway 87 is down to Premium gas only.

Tom Thumb at Coral Street and Highway 98 is out of all grades of gas and propane.

Tom Thumb at Highway 98 and 399 is out of gas and propane.

All are hoping a truck comes in this evening as scheduled.

Circle K in Navarre (where TOPs Hamburgers is) has Premium gas only and does have propane.

We will update you as closings are announced and any updates are issued.


UPDATE: As of 10/8 1 p.m.

District schools will operate on its posted Early Release schedule Tuesday, October 9. All school related activities on Tuesday must be concluded by 5:00 pm.

• District schools will be closed on Wednesday, October 10 . A decision regarding school related afternoon and evening activities for Wednesday will be made during the day on Wednesday.

• A decision on school operation for Thursday, October 11 will be announced on Wednesday.

A Hurricane Watch remains in effect for our area as Hurricane Michael heads for the northern Gulf Coast. Michael is expected to intensify to near or at Category 3 when it makes landfall somewhere along the Florida Panhandle.

Ahead of landfall, Governor Rick Scott has declared a State of Emergency for 26 counties in Florida including the panhandle. Santa Rosa County Emergency Management officials and the Board of County Commissioners have also declared a local State of Emergency. A local state of emergency allows staff to enact emergency plans without going through a board approval approval process and allows for the county to apply for state and federal assistance if needed.

Locally, sand is being placed at Pine Forest and Carroll in Milton, Pace Fire Rescue District in Pace, Citrus and Leisure in Navarre and Tiger Point Park in Gulf Breeze. Bring your own bags and shovel.

Holley by the Sea recreation center is closing tomorrow at 5 p.m. and remaining closed Wednesday. They are tentatively hoping to be back open for normal business hours Thursday.

Hurlburt Field is evacuating aircraft ahead of Hurricane Michael to Little Rock, Arkansas. The aircraft on the list are: AC-130J Ghostriders, AC-130U “Spooky” gunships, MC-130H Combat Talon II’s and PC-12s. At this time, no personnel have been ordered to evacuate.

Santa Rosa County Emergency Management is currently operating at a Level 3 or monitoring status. They expect to activate to a Level 2 (essential personnel) Tuesday at 7 a.m. and Level 1 (all Emergency Support Functions) Tuesday at 1 p.m.

Residents of mobile homes, in campers or campsites or in low lying areas are recommended to evacuate. Please seek refuge on your own initiative and independently find accommodations in a safe area.

The Milton Community Center, located at 5629 Byrom Street in Milton will open at 1 p.m. Tuesday for evacuees. This facility is pet-friendly and also equipped to accommodate those with special needs. Pet owners must stay with their pets.

Anyone needing transportation assistance to a shelter, please call (850) 983-4636. The county will only provide transportation to a designated shelter.

  • Bring the following supplies:
  • Wallet/purse (including personal identification
  • House and car keys
  • Eyeglasses
  • Medications
  • Proper clothing
  • Family pet(s)
  • Three days’ worth of personal supplies to meet individual needs of your family and pet(s).
  • Toiletries and personal items.
  • Blankets or sleeping bags.
  • Games or toys for children; books for adults.
  • Special items for infants or elderly family members.
  • Any special dietary needs and nonperishable foods for snacks.
  • Steps Residents Should Take Now
    • Review your family disaster plan. Don’t forget special plans for elderly, handicapped, children and pets.
    • Turn off any automatic sprinkler systems and do not water your lawn until the storm passes.
    • Know your evacuation zone. Remember, evacuation zones are now A-E. Use the interactive evacuation zone tool found at by typing in your address to see what zone you live in.
    • Make plans to secure your property. Check for, fix or remove loose items on your structures/homes. Be sure trees and shrubs around your home are well trimmed. Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and down spouts.
    • Fill vehicle gas tank.
    • Get cash and secure important papers and valuables.
    • Refill medications.
    • Shutter your windows.
    • Prepare boats.
    • Help neighbors with their preparations.
    • Make final preparations to secure your home so you can leave if an evacuation order is issued.
    • Make sure your hurricane kit contains non-perishable food, water, medications for three to five days for each family member and pet.
    • Know what low-lying areas near your home are subject to flooding such as creeks, drainage channels, streams and bayous.

UPDATE: As of 10/8 at 8:30 a.m.

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for our area as Tropical Storm Michael became better organized overnight with rapid intensification over the past 24 hours, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Overnight the forecast track took a shift back to the west, leaving Navarre in the forecast cone. “Do not let your guard down,” Morgan Barry, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Mobile said. “This is a large-sized storm so impacts will be felt far from the center.”

The official intensity forecast is higher than previously forecast. “The National Hurricane Center has Michael making landfall somewhere in the Florida Panhandle as an upper-end Category 2, and there is a good chance it could make landfall as a Category 3,” Barry said. “We tell everyone to prepare for one category higher. Everyone needs to finish preparations today while the weather is still nice.”

For the Navarre area Barry says we can expect significant wind damage, heavy rain, rough surf and storm surge of at least 2-4 feet depending on where the storm makes landfall.


UPDATE: As of 10/7 at 12:51 p.m.

TD 14 has become better organized and is now named Tropical Storm Michael. It is currently located about 90 miles south of Cozumel, Mexico with maximum sustained winds at 40 mph. The storm is currently stationary with a minimum central pressure of 1004 MB. Slow movement to the north is expected later today and is expected to enter the Gulf of Mexico late Monday.

The next advisory will be at 4 p.m. Central.


Just past the peak of Hurricane Season, Northwest Florida is watching a tropical depression off the east coast of Mexico near Belize. Forecasters expect the storm to strengthen over the next couple of days, potentially to a hurricane. The next named storm on the list is Michael.

Meteorologist Morgan Barry of the National Weather Service in Mobile says the Hurricane Hunters will be entering the storm later this afternoon and that should give forecasters more needed information. “The uncertainties we have at this time has to do with the storm being newly developed overnight,” Barry said. “We will have better information as we go along today and into this evening.”

Barry said the Navarre area would have potential for storm surge, rainfall and wind, but cautions it really depends on where it makes landfall.

Forecasters expect the system to pick up a little forward speed as it enters the Gulf of Mexico. The National Hurricane Center says storm surge, rainfall, and wind impacts are possible over portions of the

northern Gulf Coast by mid-week, although it is too soon to specify the exact location and magnitude of these impacts. 

Residents in these areas should monitor the progress of this system.


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