SLIDESHOW: Michael knocks out power, downs trees Wednesday night

SLIDESHOW: Michael knocks out power, downs trees Wednesday night
(Source: Jason Riopelle)

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Michael made landfall as a very high-end Category 4 hurricane near Mexico Beach, Florida, Wednesday afternoon. Michael ‘weakened’ to a Category 3 hurricane as it entered the state of Georgia.

It was the strongest hurricane to directly impact the state in more than 100 years.

Locally, weather went down-hill Wednesday evening. The worst conditions occurred between 11 p.m. and 4 a.m.

Two tornado warnings were issued for portions of Jasper and Beaufort Counties as a band of rotating thunderstorms swept through between 11 p.m. and 1 a.m.

Peak gusts averaged between 40 and 60 mph across the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry.

A peak wind gust of 59 MPH was reported on Dafauskie Island early in the morning. A 57 mph gust occurred on Tybee Island and 53 mph at the Savannah Hilton Head International Airport. Many communities recorded wind gusts between 45 and 55 mph.

Rain was isolated, and light, across the southeastern half of the area overnight. One, to 3, inches of rain occurred across northern Toombs, Emanuel, Jenkins and Screven Counties.

An inch, or 2, fell across portions of the Lowcountry.

Winds downed limbs and power lines in a few areas. In Isolated cases, tree debris caused minor damage to homes and businesses.

At the peak of the storm, several thousand people were without power.

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