SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - As Hurricane Michael strengthens, residents are making preparations and keeping track of the storm’s path. Hurricane Michael’s path is forecast to hit the Florida Gulf Coast by Wednesday, but the Mississippi Gulf Coast is now under a tropical storm watch.
As of now, South Mississippi is not in the storm’s direct path but the storm is already making an impact on the Coast. Different agencies in South Mississippi are preparing to send help to areas that will be affected by the storm.
The State of Mississippi sent two search and rescue teams to Florida to assist with potential emergency response efforts.
The Biloxi Fire Department sent two people and one swift water rescue truck to assist with the emergency efforts. They left at 3 p.m. and will stage in Florida until they’re needed. Biloxi fire is a part of the Mississippi Search and Rescue Task Force.
The Gulfport Fire Department sent 3 people including the task force leader to Crestview, Florida.
The Mississippi Hotel and Lodging Association has seen an increase in bookings. Many of the people who have called are from Florida and are looking for pet friendly hotels on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
The Hurricane Hunters are flying into the storm. WLOX Reporter Desirae Duncan will on a flight Tuesday morning with the Hurricane Hunters to get an up close look at Hurricane Michael.
Mississippi Power is preparing to send nearly 100 employees to assist Gulf Power early Tuesday afternoon.
“We are grateful to be able to help support the restoration process for Hurricane Michael while ensuring we have the personnel necessary here at home to meet the needs of our own customers,” said vice president of customer service and operations Nicole Faulk.
The team is made up of linemen and support personnel including engineers, logistics, fleet, security, supply chain and safety personnel. The storm team will depart from service centers in Meridian, Hattiesburg and Gulfport in the early afternoon on Tuesday.
Singing River Electric is monitoring the storm. It will send power crews toward Florida once it’s asked to provide assistance.
The local Red Cross chapter is in the process of creating ways to donate in partnership with WLOX.
Also, the 8th District of the U.S. Coast Guard is heavily monitoring Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, Port of Gulfport, Port of Mobile, and the Port of Pascagoula.
For up-to-date developments and details click here or download the WLOX First Alert Weather app.