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Hurricane Michael storms through Valdosta

By now, students will have either made their trek home or shacked up inside their housing accommodations as they prepare for Hurricane Michael to flow through Valdosta.

At 8 p.m. on Oct. 10, Michael became a Category 1 storm and was tracked at being about 20 miles southwest of Albany, Georgia, reported CBS News. The maximum wind speed moved to 100 mph as it moved farther inland.

Though the storm has lowered in its category, danger is still nigh and the state of emergency is still in effect.

To prepare, VSU announced at 12:58 p.m. via email that “all campus activities, offices, and operations will remain closed until 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, October 11.”

The Student Union will open from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Oct. 11, with Chick-Fil-A being open in that time period. The Student Recreation Center, open from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., and Odum Library, opening at 5:30 p.m., will also re-open on the same day.

While on-campus students have the safety of their residence halls, off-campus students that decide their house or apartment aren’t up for the task can still seek shelter in hotels and churches around Valdosta.

According to the Valdosta Daily Times in their 3:30 p.m. Oct. 10 update story, approximately 26 beds were left at the Valdosta hurricane shelter located at Park Avenue United Methodist Church.

However, if space becomes limited it may stop accepting families. Single men and women may be accepted depending on availability. Students can also take shelter at nearby hotels.

Regardless of the decision to stay at home or seek shelter elsewhere, students should follow these tips:

* Back up your electronics and keep them charged, especially portable chargers, phones and laptops.

* Stay away from windows and make sure a windowless area is readily available for use. Sleep in that windowless area just to be safe.

* Keep water, a light source, a first aid kit and supplies at an easily accessible spot.

* Keep your family and friends updated on weather and your location.

* Don’t attempt to go outside until the all-clear. A wind speed of at least 40 mph can knock down a 100 pound person.

* Stay aware and keep yourself updated on the latest news updates of the storm.

So far, Michael has killed at least one person since it made landfall at the Florida Panhandle, reported CBS News.

According to USA Today, late Oct. 10, the eye of Michael was 45 miles away from Macon, Georgia but is expected to move off the Mid-Atlantic coast by Friday.

Stay safe and stay informed.

Written by Bryce Ethridge, News Editor. Image courtesy of The Daily Express.

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