Satellite images show rows of flattened buildings, boats strewn along the land, and roadways buried in sand in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael in the Florida Panhandle.
The images, taken by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association satellites, reveal the full scope of the damage in Mexico Beach, a small coastal town about 40 miles from where Michael made landfall, which has seen some of the storm’s worst destruction.
“It’s just total devastation,” Mexico Beach resident Patricia Mulligan told BuzzFeed News. “Nobody’s house is unscathed.”
Mulligan, who weathered the storm at home with her daughter and six other people, described terrifying winds, homes completely submerged, and watching refrigerators float by in the rising waters.
“This building, which is very big, was vibrating. The floor was shaking,” she said.
FEMA has declared the area around Mexico Beach and other parts of the Florida Panhandle a major disaster.
“We have not seen destruction like that in a long time,” President Trump said.
At least 12 people have died as a result of the storm, including an 11-year-old girl and a firefighter. With sustained winds reaching 155 mph, Michael was the most powerful storm to ever hit the panhandle and the third strongest hurricane to make landfall in US history.
“We just didn’t think it was going to be as bad as it was,” said Mulligan.