ABC News(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) — The residents of Jacksonville, Florida, are bracing themselves for the approach of Hurricane Matthew, which could hit the area as early as Friday afternoon.
The city has not been hit by a major hurricane in over a century, and if Hurricane Matthew does make direct landfall in Jacksonville, “it will be unlike any hurricane in the modern area,” according to the National Weather Service in Jacksonville, which also warned residents that “catastrophic damage” is anticipated for coastal areas and areas along the St. John’s River.
The NWS added that a major hurricane has not impacted the area since Oct. 2, 1898, and “there is no local living memory of the potential of this event.”
Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry issued an expanded evacuation order on Thursday, adding parts of the city along the St. John’s River and other waterways. Five shelters have been opened in Jacksonville where residents can hunker down and wait out the storm, according to the city’s website.
At a 9 a.m. press conference Friday, Florida Gov. Rick Scott said he is very concerned about the dangerous storm surge that could affect Jacksonville.
Even President Obama expressed his concerns for the people of Jacksonville when he addressed Hurricane Matthew Friday morning, saying “the big concern that people are having right now is the effects that it could have in areas like Jacksonville on through Georgia.”
“This is a storm that we and our children will talk about for generations,” Angie Enyedi, the NWS incident meteorologist in Jacksonville, said in a statement Thursday.
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