Hurricane Matthew: 1.5 million asked to flee Florida
- Over 1.5 million Florida residents have been asked to flee.
- Category 4 hurricane has the potential to turn into a Category 5 hurricane.
- Hurricane Matthew will stronger than any hurricane in recent decades.
Over 1.5 million Florida residents have been asked to flee as Category 4 hurricane that is hammering the northwest Bahamas is only hours away from Florida's east coast.
In Haiti, where the Hurricane Matthew left a trail of destruction, the government said that over 280 people have died.
According to Weather.com, this rare Category 4, perhaps even Category 5 hurricane is expected to cause flooding rainfall stretching into Georgia and South Carolina by the weekend.
The National Weather Service in Jacksonville, Florida in a statement said: "Some of the lowest barrier islands will be completely overtopped with large battering waves and life-threatening flooding. Barrier islands are likely to be breached and it is extremely possible that new inlets will be cut off in the worst affected areas."
The National Weather Service also warned the residents about the potential disaster stating that hurricane Matthew will stronger than any hurricane in recent decades, including the 2004 hurricanes (Charley, Frances, Jeanne) as well as Hurricane David in 1979.
Florida Governor Rick Scott on Thursday issued a dire warning to residents living in evacuation zones to leave immediately or risk death.
Warning the 1.5 million people living in evacuation zones in Florida, Scott said: “You need to leave. Evacuate, evacuate, evacuate.”
US President Barack Obama has declared a federal state of emergency in Florida and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local efforts to deal with the devastating storm, authorising the Homeland Security Department and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate disaster relief efforts.