Fallen electrical poles block a road in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael on October 12, 2018 in Panama City, Florida. Photo: Hector Retamal/AFP/Getty Images

Hurricane Michael hit with such ferocity that parts of the Florida Panhandle resemble the site of a nuclear blast, rather than a weather event. The storm's full fury was reserved for a narrow strip of land between Panama City and Apalachicola, particularly the area in and around Mexico Beach.

The impact: Michael wreaked havoc in the region where the menacing, 12-mile-wide eye came ashore. As seen in satellite images, the storm's winds and surge were potent enough to create a new island, destroy an entire beach town and lay waste to a strategically valuable Tyndall Air Force Base.

Here's what Tyndall Air Force Base looked like before and after the storm. Note the loss of hangars, aircraft shelters, and entire buildings on the airfield and base itself.

Before and after images of Tyndall Air Force Base, located just east of Panama City, Florida. Satellite image ©2018 DigitalGlobe, a Maxar company.

The damage to the hangars is even more apparent in a zoomed-in view. This is the first time such a base has taken a direct hit from a storm this powerful since Category 5 Hurricane Andrew struck Homestead, AFB in 1992. That base never fully recovered.

Damage to Tyndall AFB's infrastructure, including fighter jet shelters (top center). Satellite images ©2018 DigitalGlobe, a Maxar company; NOAA.

Southwest of Tyndall, the hurricane created a new island. This is not unheard of with powerful hurricanes, but is still striking to witness.

A new island created out of the St. Joseph Peninsula, Florida. Images: NOAA.

Panama City, Florida, was exposed to some of the storm's fiercest winds within its towering eye wall, where clouds extended into the lower stratosphere, and air was rushing in to fill the void created by the extraordinarily low pressure at the center of the storm. The damage there is staggering, too.

Hurricane Michael ripped this Panama City neighborhood apart. Satellite image ©2018 DigitalGlobe, a Maxar company.

Go deeper: Our full Hurricane Michael coverage.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Chris Christie: Wear a mask "or you may regret it — as I did" — Senate Democrats block vote on McConnell's targeted relief bill.
  2. Business: New state unemployment filings fall.
  3. Economy: Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet).
  4. Health: FDA approves Gilead's remdesivir as a coronavirus treatment How the pandemic might endMany U.S. deaths were avoidable.
  5. Education: Boston and Chicago send students back home for online learning.
  6. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.

Early voting eclipses 2016 total with 12 days until election

People stand in line to vote early in Fairfax, Virginia in September. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Americans have cast more than 47.1 million ballots in the 2020 presidential election, surpassing the total early-vote count for 2016 with 12 days left until Election Day, according to a Washington Post analysis of voting data.

Why it matters: The election is already underway, as many states have expanded early and mail-in voting options because of the coronavirus pandemic.

What to expect from the final debate of the 2020 election

Trump and Biden at the first debate. Morry Gash-Pool/Getty Image

Watch for President Trump to address Joe Biden as “the big guy” or “the chairman” at tonight's debate as a way of dramatizing the Hunter Biden emails. Hunter's former business partner Tony Bobulinski is expected to be a Trump debate guest.

The big picture: Trump's advisers universally view the first debate as a catastrophe — evidenced by a sharp plunge in Trump’s public and (more convincingly for them) private polling immediately following the debate.