North Country Natives In Path Of Hurricane MichaelPosted: Updated:
Windows and doors are boarded up in a Panama City Beach neighborhood as Hurricane Michael continues to rage across Florida's panhandle.
Gary Van Brocklin, who used to live in Alexandria Bay, opted to stick it out when the storm was still a category 2 hurricane, but it quickly intensified and because of where he lives, there was no way out.
"Too late to leave, yea. We're on an island so once the bridges, they shut 'em down, you're hunkered down," said Van Brocklin.
As of 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Van Brocklin said his family was lucky. Despite 150 mile per hour wind gusts, his house was holding up. But he said other homes were not as fortunate.
He sent us the above photo of the gas station down the road from his house.
While he says the worst may have passed, he's sill keeping an eye on what the storm does.
"We're not out of the woods yet. It's a pretty big storm and there's still tornado threats. That really scares me," he said.
Even 50 miles west of Van Brocklin's home in Panama City Beach, the storm was intense.
Dave Shambo, who grew up in Watertown, rode out the storm with his son, Brody, in Destin, Florida.
Shambo said as of early this afternoon winds were up to 60 miles per hour.
"The palms in my front yard are going sideways. Most of the houses are boarded up and it's raining pretty hard, going sideways," he said.
It's being reported that Michael is the most powerful hurricane to hit Florida's panhandle in recorded history.