MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Gov. Kay Ivey has declared a statewide State of Emergency as of 3:00 p.m. today, urging people in south Alabama to prepare as Hurricane Michael approaches.

Widespread power outages, high winds, heavy rain, and related debris are expected due to this Category 1 hurricane, with flash floods and tornadoes possible.

“Tomorrow we will start seeing the effects of Michael and those in its path will need to take shelter by tomorrow evening,” Governor Ivey said. “Please stay weather aware today and tomorrow for any forecast changes. Most importantly, heed all warnings and instructions from local authorities.”

In issuing the State of Emergency, Ivey directed activation of the Alabama Emergency Operations Plan and, along with Alabama Emergency Management Agency Director Brian Hastings, will continue to monitor the forecast.

“Hurricane Michael is forecast to become a major hurricane and it will produce wide-spread power outages and debris that will challenge our response and recovery in the southern and Wiregrass counties,” Hastings said. “I am concerned about the cone of uncertainty as Hurricane Michael is leaning west today. Residents and businesses in coastal Alabama must be vigilant and closely monitor the storm’s path and be prepared for a major hurricane.”

Currently near Cuba, the hurricane is expected to make landfall on Florida’s panhandle and also affect portions of south Alabama. Some counties were under a tropical storm watch this afternoon.

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