SINGER ISLAND, Fla. (WFLA-WWLP) – Hurricane Matthew is about 175 miles off the coast of Palm Beach County, Florida, and conditions are getting bad.
By noontime, the winds have started to pick up on Singer Island, located just northeast of West Palm Beach. Wave heights there have increased significantly, and storm surge is a major concern.
Mandatory evacuations are underway on Singer Island, as well as other barrier islands along the coast of Palm Beach County. Some residents, however, are refusing to go, and will be waiting out the storm in the danger zone.
Florida Governor Rick Scott said Thursday that the storm is life-threatening, and residents must get out for their own safety.
“This is going to kill people,” Scott said.
Late Thursday morning, the winds from Hurricane Matthew intensified, and the storm regained Category 4 status. It is expected to remain a Category 4 storm as it approaches Florida, though it is not exactly clear where- or even if- it will make landfall. Even if it does not actually make landfall, devastation is still possible along Florida’s Atlantic coast.