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>> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. welcome to our continuing coverage of hurricane matthew as it barrels along the u.s. southeastern coast. i'm michael holmes near melbourne in florida. >> it's 11:00 here in los angeles fl i'm john vause. we'd like to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. if it makes land fall, officials say hurricane matthew will be the strongest storm to hit the area in more than 100 years. powerful winds and rain have been lashing parts of florida. emergency officials in one county say it's too dangerous to rescue anyone who may need help. today florida's governor was urging millions to evacuate. >> we are starting to see the impacts, and it's a monster. again, our number one priority is protecting every life in this state. so, again, if you need to evacuate and you haven't,
evacuate. this storm will kill you. time is running out we don't have that much time left. >> that was earlier in the day n. many parts it is now too late to leave. so far close to 200,000 people have lost electricity. matthew has already devastated parts of caribbean, killing hundreds of people in haiti alone. here's a closer look at the area under direct threat. more than 26 million people are currently under weather advisories. more than 11 million are under hurricane warnings, the most severe category. 177 million are under hurricane watch. 6 million a tropical storm warning. 7 million more are under a tropical storm watch. cnn is covering this story from every angle. we have a team of correspondents in major cities up and down the coast from florida to south carolina with the very latest information. michael holmes in palm beach, florida. expected to hit there in the coming hours. michael, you have been noticing the winds, the intensity getting
a lot stronger in just the past 60 minutes? >> absolutely, john. in the last ten minutes or so the rain has become absolutely torrential and we have been getting some very strong gusts of wend ripping through here. it's just really a pour ten of things to come. it's just gone what, 2:00 a.m. here on the east coast of the u.s. and i can tell you that the worst of it isn't meant to hit for another two or three hours. but it's getting -- it's getting pretty nautical here at the moment. you mentioned there is a couple of hundred thousand people without power. it's been an hour or more now since emergency services said they are not going out if you call 911. it's simply too dangerous for them to do so. if you are hunkered down. that's where you are staying. if you have an emergency, you are going to have have to suffer through it until this abates. that could be many, many hours. the high tide was two hours ago. the big concern become storm
surge, which could be as high as 10, 11, 12 feet for three meters. the barrier islands here where the houses are taking the full brunt of this. you can just imagine what a storm surge is going to do to those place. they were largely evacuated. however police were concerned that a lot of people did not evacuate. and worryingly, some of those in mobile home parks which are the least equipped to handle stuff like this, john. >> michael, as we have been saying officials have made it perfectly clear the time for making preparation is over. if you are there, hunker down. for those who decided to stay behind, how well prepared are they in the melbourne region, especially if they take a direct hit? >> yeah, again, we've been here a couple of days now and we've been seeing a lot of people, private homes and businesses boarding up, putting up metal sheets and wood sheets as well to cover their windows and the
like. they are familiar around here with hurricanes. and a lot of people know exactly what to do. as you know, john, florida is a very transient state. people do come and go for work. there is a lot of people here also who have never been through anything like this and who perhaps haven't taken it as seriously as they might. so, yeah, we want to bring in derek dan van damme to talk a little bit more about this. i know, derek, that you have been reporting in the last hour or so that the eye has taken a jog to the east, which is good news, if it continues to do that in terms of win strength. i can tell right here in melbourne, in florida, this has really picked up in the last half hour or so. >>ic michael in the next two hours you will see the brunt and the full force of hurricane matthew to say the least. that shift in the track is roughly about 20 miles to the east. good news, too, for anyone along the atlantic coastline for the florida peninsula. this could mean the deference between cat 1 wind or got 4 or
strong cat 3 winds. we get updates every three hours or so. this is the 2:00 a.m. update. it has dropped in strength by 10 miles per hour bringing to it a strong category 3. 120 miles per hour winds right around the center of circulation which by the way is becoming more defined. so this storm hasn't really lost its ability to strengthen just yet. er with, that eye wall is still over the warm ocean waters across this region which lgbt like jet fuel to help intensify and strengthen the storm. you are looking at the latest radar. i want to point out a few things. the eye wall is starting to take shape quite nice loochl it's just off the coastline of florida, just to the south and east of melbourne and the spais coast region. if we zoom in a little bit closer to this area we'll get into detail because what i'm starting to notice here, see the dark shading of yellow and
orange on the western periphery of the eye wall, that circle right in the center of the storm? that's where i believe the strongest winds are located. and guess what. those winds are traveling towards the shoreline. and you can imagine, too, what this is doing as it pushes up against the sea or the ocean surface. it is building that storm surge is what we call it. and that will bring that in for this particular region, perhaps seven to 11 feet, especially from melbourne northward into the space coast area and then we have the outer rain bands still impacting the central parts of the state. we can't forget about orlando. walt disney world is closed at least through friday because of the effects of this system. where is it going from here? let's time things out for you. we have our tropical storm force if not hurricane force winds already reaching the shoreline.
from is that storm surge, 7 to 11 feet this is friday evening. palm coast, daytona beach. and then our main focus moves into southeast georgia and south carolina. that's where we have a potential for a major flood problem. lefts dynamics at that talk about here. michael back out to you in the horrendous weather you are experiencing now. >> reporter: i can tell you, mate, it is a bit -- it is as they say in the surfing world getting a bit gnarly out here at the moment. derek thanks so much for that. i imagine definitely two or three or four hours from now it's going to be much, much worse than it is now. but over the last half an hour or so the wind have really picked up. the rain has become torrential. we've been hearing cracks of trees. we've seen the power going out around this city.
sara sidner, you are further north than we are here in daytona beach, and this is all headed your way as well. what's the situation there? >> we are about 64 miles from you. and we are getting those bands, as we've been talking about, all night long. we are expecting to get them -- what you are getting there here just shortly. but it comes and goes. right now, it's okay. i mean, it's blowing and the trees are bending and there is a lot of wind. the rain is not pound like it does when those bands come in. but it has been sustained winds. i think we were probably at tropical storm winds at this point in time. you know, is there doing to be a lot of damage from these winds? no. when this gets bigger and fit gets closer and we start seeing hurricane strength winds, then, yes, and that's yes they have said, look, we are going to go ahead and put a curfew in place. one of the reasons for that is to make sure there is no one
lurking around trying to break into businesses right now it is relatively safe enough walk around. you are not going to get pushed down but they have already had an incident in one part of florida where someone has broken into a store. they want to make sure folks are in their homes, folks are hunkered down because this is going to get worse and worse. it's very deceiving. it can be like this, and then ten minutes from now you are being battered by sideways winds. this is why they have said look, we are going to make sure you guys are in and safe. there is a curfew in place. michael. >> what sort of preparations were done around where you are? we've seen a lot of boarding up here, there was a lot of debris clean up as well. people were urged not to -- they were urged to trim their trees back but don't put the branches on the side of the road which
could then of course become airborne. a lot of warnings like that. i imagine it's the same there? >> absolutely the same here. and also we are seeing sandbags. just underneath my feet the hotels had put up sandbags and folks around their homes. folks are using hurricane shutters, boarding up their business. anything along the coast people have tried to make sure that their property is at least closed off, hoping to keep that whipped from getting in, breaking windows, and doing damage. michael? >> all right sarah, thanks so much. yeah, as we've been mentioning over the last couple of hours, too, one of the great concerns that police had was most people did seem to heed the warnings, eat got out of town altogether or are in some of the many shelters that have been set up around melbourne. but there are some who held out, who said we were not going
anywhere. worryingly for police, some of them are in mobile home parks the least equipped places to deal with what is here already and yet to come. >> there are thousands of people in shelters right now across florida. we are told there is still plenty of room, for those in the storm zone it may be too dangerous to head there at this point in time. michael thank you. despite those numerous warnings to evacuate we have been talking about this a lot, some residents are choosing to stay and ride out the storm. >> we're prepared for it. we would have evacuated but my wife -- shoes' one of the directors for the county. and she is overseeing a couple of shelters. so we're going to hunker down and stay with it and do what would have he got to do. >> i've been through all the storms here growing up. this is just another one to put on the list. >> we have friend that left, friends that have stayed. and we are on the phone constantly trying to see who is the first one that's staying is actually going to say we're leaving. we are trying the feed off of each other's fears and our
calmness, really. i mean, we're all scared. >> a storm chaser joins us on the line from port canaveral. when we were talking to you last, the winds were picking up. >> the wind are definitely picking up. the hurricane and the eye we have been talking about all day and all evening how close it is going to approach. winds are about 75 miles an hour, five miles east, at 85. 20 miles off the coast, at 100. 150 miles off the coast, at 120. an observation bui just straight east of my location, to miles, just recorded 17-foot waves. that is the storm surge coming to the northwest now is 17 foot
waves to have buis, i believe it was 41016789 is now tracking to the northwest. so the storm surge is on the way. again, it depends where the eye goes, how far it comes inland but big huge battering waves are 20 miles ooeft east of the coast. 17 foot waves now just ahead of the eye wall. and winds gusting 120. about 30 miles or 40 miles east of thigh location. and they are continuing to track to the northwest at about 15 miles an hour. so the winds have picked up here. we may have hurricane force winds here at cape canaveral within the hour. and higher gusts maybe up to 90 as the eye wall gets closer and closer to us here. we'll see what happens here. >> jeff, as we are talking we are looking at your periscope live there. as you drive through port can of a rachl it seems deserted right now. people heeding the warnings to stay in place.
back to the 17 foot storm surge you are talking about. it's 20 miles to the east. what is the time frame before that hits the coast? if it's 17 feet 20 miles out and the what does that mean when it impacts the coastline. >> stand by. winds are gusting -- winds are gusting over hurricane force at my location. u.s. trees are bending here at my location here at cap canaveral. let me make one correction fl it's not a 17 foot storm surge. it is 17 foot waves on the bui. it's showing you the water is ramping up, the water is piling up at the eye wall, high winds, 120 miles an hour winds back to the east 20 miles. as that water is piling up from the high winds it's pushing the water up like a pile and the latest bui report is that the water has risen 17 feet in last couple of hours. so that's a big wall of water pushing toward the coast. it will take another two to four
hours probably to come to that shore. it won't be that high when it comes on shore. it will be about half that number. six to eight confused storm surge is likely approaching east of cape canaveral now and north wad as the eye wall is approaching. the conditions are rapidly approaching at the cape. winds are gusting over hurricane force. plenty of rain, and the trees are bending. i'm waiting for power outage asks telephone poles to start snapping because the winds are picking up here at this location. >> the storm chaser giving us the latest information from cape canaveral. 17 foot waves 20 miles east of his locate. an indication that that storm surge is certainly on its way. according to jeff it will be there in two to four hours. when it arrives it will be eight feet. in line with the predictions we
welcome back to our continuing coverage of hurricane matthew as it plods its way along the coast. the big fear, is it going to hit anywhere? and if it does, this is the place, probably. i'm michael holmes in palm bay near melbourne in florida. john? >> i'm john vause in los angeles. it's just gone 11:21 here on a thursday night. heavy winds are battering florida as the storm continues to move onto the southeastern part of the united states. he has killed hundreds of people in the caribbean. governors in florida, georgia and south carolina urged people to evacuate. many decided to stay. police and fire now say it is do dangerous to respond to any
emergencies. let's get back to michael homes in palm bay along the central sfla coast. pikal the word is 200,000 people are without electricity. but the prediction was if this storm was as bad as expected more than 7 million people could be without power. >> reporter: exactly, john. before we heard derek van dam in the last hour telling us a little bit about how the eye had jogged a little bit to the right and how that was good news, and would have a marked impact on the strength of the winds, well, before that actually happened, the national weather service for this area around melbourne in florida but out a very dire sort of frightening prediction saying that what could happen here, with hurricane matthew, could lead to places being uninhabitable for weeks and perhaps even months. now, hopefully, that dire prediction with the change -- the little change in direction, might not come true.
but i can tell you it's gotten pretty bad here at the moment. we've actually in the last few minutes moved position because of the strength of the winds and the rain as well. rosa flores is on duty for us in jackson. i wanted to ask you, what's going on there? i mean it's certainly getting a bit rough here in melbourne. >> you know, michael, we just got the latest update from the city of jacksonville. they are anticipating this hurricane will hit as a category 4 when it hits this city. so that of course is a huge concern with sustained winds of, you know, greater than 60 miles an hour. and those conditions are expected to deteriorate any time between now and friday evening. and then also through saturday. now i want to show you a round of it. one of the big concerns here is the storm surge.
now, the waterway that you see here is the waterway that divides the city. it splits the city in half. they are expecting swells here from six feet and nine feet. i'm probably six feet tall. i have a ruler that can give us a gauge. imagine three feet above me. and those can be the conditions, the level of the water that they are expecting here. that's why the entire downtown area, when you look at a map of the evacuation zone you see there is a thin red line all around the downtown area. that's the reason. when we talk about the wind speeds i want you to look at the beautiful bridge behind me here. just to tell you the story behind what these officials are dealing with. like i said there is a river that splits this city in half. side to the other?ou connect one
through bridges. it is a city connected through bridges. there is sensors on this bridge and all of the other bridges. and once the sustained winds cross 40 to 45 miles an hour, those bridges will be closed. no one will be able to go from one side to the next. that was one of the reasons why first responders specifically in this city asked people to evacuate early, because once the winds pick up it's going to be impossible for people to cross through this city. michael? >> yeah. exactly. big worries, too, here, around melbourne, too, about what damage may be caused to infrastructure, those causeway bridges, the sort of thing you are talking about. rosa floors in jacksonville, florida, north of where we are in the melbourne area. john it's getting worse and worse. i've got to kell you. >> michael, it may be getting
worse there but the latest word we are getting from the national hurricane center is matthew is now a cot gather 3 sustained winds detrooes creasing from 145 miles per hour to 120 miles per hour which fits in with that new track we have been talking about moving 20 miles east of the coast. right of the map as it continues to head north. it does not mean the danger is over. clearly this storm is still packing quite a punch. we'll take a break. when we come back, more of our continuing coverage, including a report from a man who calls himself the weather paparazzi. upgrade your phone system and learn how you could save
energy efficiency projects to save energy every month. if you're part of the fabric of the community, you've got to ensure that you do things right, environment included. learn how you can save at pge.com/save together, we're building a better california. >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. >> welcome back to our coverage of hurricane matthew as it barrels along the u.s. east coast. i'm michael holmes in palm bay near melbourne in florida. >> i'm john vause here in los angeles. more than 200,000 people are
without power as hurricane matthew lashes eastern florida. this monster storm is staying just off the coast with 130 miles an hour or 200 kilometer per hour winds. the storm surge could top 11 feet for more than three meters. emergency services are suspended in some areas because it is a simply too dangerous right now. that means those who decided to stay are basically on their own. many more, though, heeded the warnings to leave. >> we were going to stick it out and the guys come out and told us the weather is picking up it's going to be a category 4. we have a wife and kids. i'm not going to take the chance to put their lives at risk. i wish a lot of people would take that same advice. i have been out tours of combat, not afraid of much but i'm not going to risk my life or my wife and kids' life. >> michael holmes is in the thick of things. joins us from palm bay florida.
every time we come back to you, the weather keeps getting worse. compare it now to just say ten minutes ago. what is happening? >> exactly. as i mentioned earlier, we were about 20 meters over that way. and the wind gusts were just becoming so intense it was nearly knocking us over. so we actually relocated just around the corner to get a little bit more shelter from it. but, yeah, over the last probably hour, in particular the last 20, 30 minutes or so, the windily really picked up. the sustained wind. and in particular the gusts have become really intense and the rain, well it is a just like a tropical downpour at the moment. which was mentioned by the national weather service before this slight change in the direction, was there could be catastrophic damage done by this storm. and still, one imagines there will be damage done simply by the storm surge as you mentioned.
that storm surge is going to be three meters, 12 feet, perhaps that much along this part of the coastline and you have got these barrier islands out there, and these houses on that barrier island and that storm surge coming over could be quite ruinous to those houses out there let alone further up the coast. i covered hurricane sandy back in 2012 and saw what was then a tropical storm force surge and what it did to the houses on the coastline there. i remember seeing one house that had been picked up and had been dumped 100 yards away in the milled of the road, john. >> michael, one of the issues that has been brought up is that possibly why some people decided to stay is they simply are unaware how dangerous these hurricanes can actually about. they have not have to live thou a storm as strong as this one in florida. they don't know the dangers. so that's why they stayed?
>> that's a good point to raise. you know, you have got a section of the population in florida which have ridden out any number of hurricanes. they are the ones who know what these things can do. you do get a bit of cry wolf sometimes where you know, every gets warned about a hurricane and nothing happens so the next time they are not so worried about it. this time around, authorities were saying you better take notice. this thing is massive. it could be a once in ten, 20, 30, 40 year storm skmchl a lot of the locals took it very seriously. what you do have here though in florida is a farley transient population. a large percentage, they come, they go, they move in here to work and they have not been through a hurricane. and they don't know what it is a like. and they are the ones that perhaps take ate lot less seriously. where we are staying is a hurricane-proof or a hurricane-rated building. and 80% of the people staying there are locals who knew to get
out of their houses and come somewhere safe. dare van damme has been following the movement of hurricane matthew. and a slight movement that while it doesn't feel comfortable here could be good news down the track. >> yeah, something where miles really matter here, michael. but you were talking about the eacuations, people either staying put to try and ride out the storm or perhaps they are listening to authorities and actually taking and heeding the warnings and moving inland away from the coastline. but one thing that's interesting to noted and one thing we need to consider here is that the last time a major hurricane impacted florida, we are talking about over a decade. there has been two million new residents that have called florida home since then. and they may not even know that they are in an evacuation zone or they may be socomplacent and they don't know they should move to higher ground or away from the coast in the event of a
hurricane. some people are not familiar with the power of this type of storm. look at the wind gusts that we have at the moment. this actually just ticked up a few miles per hour. 69 miles per hour wind gust. 59 near melbourne. we are talking easily over 100 kilometer per hour wind gusts going forward. we expect to to really pick up as the eye runs parallel with the coastline of florida. michael said and you heard him mention that that exact path is critical. miles and kilometers count. because if it wobbles westward 30 miles, it brings the strongest winds on shore. if it stays off shore the bulk of the destructive winds stay 15 to 30 miles off shore. we are splitting hairs. we are not going to feel the blunt of this storm from fort piers north land, the space
coast, in towards orlando hurricane force winds expected there. you can see the build up on the latest radar. here is the eye wall. you can see the cone centric circle. you can imagine the winds rotating around this. some of the stronger rain bands with the shading of yellow. that is pushing up the sea as well. the storm surge is the next major concern. not to mention the chance of severe weather. seven to 11 feet. up the coastline, through jacksonville, towards savanna. michael, after you we will focus up towards tjacksonville and south georgia. >> the worst of it here where we are is still probably two or three or four hours away. >> michael thank you very much. let's head north to cocobeach,
that is where storm chaser doug keysling joins us on the line. give us an update of what the conditions are like in your location. >> in the last half an hour the conditions deteriorated. we have got 50 to 670 miles an hour sustained winds here. to give you anna visible, imagine riding in an airplane with moderate to extreme turbulence. being parked here on a 1 a, the suv is starting to get rocked around. >> from where you are, what's the extent of the damage? how severe has it been? >> the damage is not that extreme yet. except for the power grid is starting to fail. we are seeing numerous four flashes all over the place where the power lines are coming down and just shorting out. >> how many people do you think have stayed hype to try and ride out this storm? a lot of people were told to evacuate but many stayed?
>> i'm not seeing too many. the condo i have friends in is almost completely empty. maybe 15 people or maybe 15 households stayed there. and this place has 100. i would say a good part of the population did heed the warning. >> because the big concern isn't just the wind and the rain right now but there is storm surge. we heard a short time ago that there is 17 feet waves 20 miles off the coast which indicates that that storm surge is on its way. how exposed is cocobeach? if they have got 17 foot waves you are going to see water come over the sand dunes and coming over on to a 15. while we have barriers, there is a lot of break in these berrios to get out to the beach. it's not going to be good for this area if that's the case. >> essentially the preparations which they have done, is there anything they can do to try to deal ahead of time with a storm surge that big?
>> if the storm surge is that big, there is really not much they can do about it. so it's just going to be -- playet by ear. i mean, look at nhc's forecast, they are saying now the eye might not make it on-shore. so this area might get spared. againet might not. we will have to wait and see which way the eye goes. >> will the direction of the eye impact the extent of the storm surge in any way? >> yeah, because, see, the wind going around the eye is where the strongest wind is. if you were in the right front or northeast quadrant of the eye that's where you will have the most extreme surge and the extreme winds coming in from it. as long as that stays off shore, it will less than -- i'm not going to say it is a going to be great. but it's going to lessen the impact. >> and how many hours before you think the worst will hit? >> right now, et cetera 2:41 eastern. i'm thinking within the next
four hours, five hours, it's going to deteriorate rapidly from where i'm at right now. >> doug, thank you for the update. a storm tracker action storm chaser on the line from cocobeach. appreciate it doug, thank you. we have the chief executive officer of the american red cross, the los angeles region and johns us with more details on the relief effort. first we'll start with the situation in georgia and south carolina. what test focus for the red cross right now? >> we want people to know there is a safe place if they can't stay at home. we don't want people to stay at home simply because they don't think they have any other place to go. they are shelters grk to red cross.org or download the safety app. >> right now stlis are going to georgia and south carolina. >> pretty much in florida, you need to batten down the hatches,
make sure your bathroom is full of water. make sure you have canned food. batteries for radio. there is no electricity for television. you need the battery powered radio and don't about out in the storm. >> florida is well prepared. emergency services have been warning about the storm for quite some time. haiti is the a different situation. they knew it was coming but preparations obviously nothing like you have in florida or the united states. 300 people confirmed dead and the expectation is that that number will rise. >> cuba and haiti were seriously hit. the eastern end of cuba and the southern end of haiti, 60 miles from cuba, very deeply damaged. cuba's infrastructure is more developed. they are a better public health system. haiti is facing search-and-rescue of people. that's first recovery, the next is if they have colora with a compromised water system is another great public health
risk. >> they have been dealing with the colora outbreak for quite some time the water-borne disease is potentially an issue. until they re-establish contact there -- i mean they are getting in, butting in until they have a major contact re-established we don't know the extent of the damage. >> we don't know. from a humanitarian perspective it makes getting aid there much more difficult. >> when are you getting into hait haiti. >> the red cross of haiti has yet to activate the international network. we will, as will many other red crosses provide support. and other organizations will also be providing sort. >> difficulties working with a government that's in a transition phase. there is a lot of difficulties. >> they suspended the elections. there is a lot of enough going on there right now. >> thank you. we will take a short break here
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they won't go out. it's simply too dangerous. >> michael, you can really hear the wind is whipping up right now where you are. hello, everybody, i'm john vause. thanks for staying with us. hurricane matthew as you can see battering the coast of florida he at this moment. the storm earlier plowed through the caribbean, 269 people were killed there, mostly in haiti. another 100,000 are living in shelters. we have more on the devastation caused in haiti. >> reporter: hurricane matthew was at strongest storm to hit haiti in a half century. and the devastation is just now becoming apparent. many were killed by falling trees, flying debris, and swollen rivers. the disaster has left haiti facing its worst humanitarian crisis since the devastating earthquake six years ago that killed over 200,000 people and were tens of thousands still
live in makeshift homes and tents. entire villages have been flattened. roads have been swept away by floods. and there are reports of a freshwater shortage. >> we are estimating upwards to about a million people have been affected, mainly through flooding, through collapse of houses, complete destruction or partial damage. but we are also seeing a lot of crops and livestock damaged by the hurricane. >> reporter: international aid is trickling in, but the hard hit southern region has been cut off from the rest of the country after a bridge collapsed, preventing much-needed supplies from getting through. in the town of jeremy, residents were forced to sleep and cook outside because their homes were either flooded or destroyed. according to the u.n., more than 350,000 people need assistance, including shelter. and sunday's presidential election has been postponed. another worry for haiti,
standing water. aid agencies fear that mosquito-borne diseases from colora will spread which has plagued the nation since the earthquake. communication systems are still down in many areas so the full impact of the storm remains unclear. amaryl walker, cnn. hurricane matthew might just be one of the costliest storms in u.s. history. in a moment we'll look at how the impact on florida could spread across the entire country. get the new iphone on us when you switch to at&t and have directv.
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hello, everyone, i'm michael holmes in palm bay, florida, as we continue to follow the breaking news of the progression on hurricane matthew. >> i'm john vause here in los angeles and the worst of the storm could be hours away now. matthew has been downgraded to a category three with sustained winds of 120-miles-per-hour. millions of coastal residents in four states have decided to flee the path of the storm. almost 4,000 flights have been canceled through saturday, and more than 200,000 people right now are without electricity in florida. michael holmes, back to you
there in palm bay. you are expected to brunt of the storm right now and it looks like it's getting worse. >> reporter: yeah, it has, john, over the last hour or two in particular, it's really whipping up here. the gusts are enough to knock you off your feet just about and the rain has become torrential and the thing is we're still really an hour or two away from the worst of it. so -- and perhaps even three hours away from the worst of it. as you point out there's been a lot of evacuations. the roads were full of people heading away, but a lot of people staying here in shelters and also in their own homes riding it out, john. >> of course there's not just the wind and the rain, but the storm serge. there are many, many tense hours to come. michael, thank you. if michael is as bad as expected, it could cause millions in damage, causing a ripple effect in the united states.
our cnn meteorologist explains. >> hurricane matthew is likely to have a devastating economic impact on florida and u.s. look at the interstate system. this is interstate i-95. the main highway of the east coast of the united states, tremendous amount of goods flow up and down this corridor. let's start here in miami. the fourth largest urban area in the. united states. it's got the number one cruise passenger port in the world. now let's move up to ft. lauderdale known for its boating canals. the yachting industry is worth nearly $12 million and it's got one of the worlda's 50ist busiet airports. and port st. lucy, and cape canaveral, and kennedy center and then you've got the fun coast with dabytona beach,
nicknamed the spring break capitol of the word. then jacksonville. cargo activity supports nearly $27 billion in annual economic output and just north into georgia, the port savannah, is the second busiest container exporter in the u.s. it's got the largest concentration of import distribution centers on the east coast. so you can see here, from these maps how devastating matthew may be to florida and up and down the east coast. power could be out to over 7 million for several weeks. we'll be watching it closely as i'm sure you will, as well. >> tom, thank you. you know it's bad when disneyland closes. you've been watching cnn's breaking news coverage. i'm john vause in los angeles. >> and i'm michael holmes in palm bay, as hurricane matthew continuous its path "effort