With Hurricane Michael headed to Florida, I’ve heard all kinds of crazy things the past couple of days. “Walt Disney World is going to close again.” “The stores are out of food and water.” My personal favorite is, “The entire state of Florida is under a mandatory evacuation order.” While it is true that Hurricane Michael is a dangerous storm, that doesn’t mean that we’re about to get a direct hit here in Central Florida. The storm is headed for the Florida Panhandle, which is hundreds of miles away. We’ll get wind and rain, but we don’t even have any warnings or watches in this area.
Last year when Hurricane Irma hit, the storm passed directly over our house. We had some damage, but it could have been a lot worse. We didn’t even lose electricity in our neighborhood. (I know that it was worse in other areas, I’m not trying to downplay that.) My wonderful parents, who live in Massachusetts, watched the storm on TV and saw the worst of what was happening. They panicked, even though I called several times to let them know that we were fine.
You have to remember that national television stations want you to watch, so they’ll show the worst parts of what is happening. They wouldn’t have shown our neighborhood, because it just wasn’t news worthy. After Irma I was happy to add a picture of our roofing shingles scattered across our lawn to my personal Facebook, but I didn’t think that Jim Cantore was about to show up.
My point is this. With Michael or any other storm, where you get your information makes a difference. If you want to know what is going on, the national news might not give you the best idea. Some of the local Orlando TV stations are WESH, WFTV, WKMG, and WOFL. Spectrum also has a 24 hour a day news channel. It’s only for Spectrum customers, but if a bad storm is expected they allow anyone to watch. Check the Facebook page of any station or download their app for the latest information. I’m not endorsing any one news outlet. I just know that the storm I see on the local news and the storm that I see on the national news look like two different storms.