Michael closes North Carolina ports, suspends deliveries
- Vessel operations are suspended at the Ports of Wilmington and Morehead City in North Carolina as tropical storm Michael, which made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane Wednesday, moves over the southeastern United States. Truck gates at the ports continue to operate.
- On Wednesday, the Coast Guard set North Carolina ports' condition at Zulu, the most severe status. Conditions at the Ports of Savannah and Charleston have been changed from X-Ray to Yankee, meaning no new traffic will be accepted to the ports, and vessels planning to depart should leave immediately.
- UPS and FedEx have announced suspensions of deliveries in several zip codes in Alabama, Florida and Georgia.
Tropical storm Michael is now passing over the Carolinas, just weeks after Florence pummeled the southeastern U.S., closing roads, manufacturing facilities and ports.
Wind and rain from Florence wreaked havoc in North Carolina, but the most severe flooding and damage came as a result of the storm surge, which causes water levels to rise before a hurricane makes landfall.
The state isn't affected by a storm surge this time around, as Michael came in through the Gulf Coast. North Carolina ports said they expect vessel operations to resume Friday.
The storm surge on the Gulf Coast, however, has caused severe damage along the Florida panhandle. Thousands of buildings are destroyed, many residents and businesses are left without power, and at least two residents have been killed by the storm.
Last-mile operations are at a standstill, with UPS suspending pickups and deliveries in nearly 300 zip codes in Florida and Georgia. FedEx Ground is also suspending service in zip codes in Alabama, Florida and Georgia.
"Although contingency plans are in place, some service delays and disruptions can be anticipated for inbound and outbound shipments" for the three states, FedEx said.
Florence disrupted deliveries nationwide, and Michael no doubt will do the same.
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