VALDOSTA — Valdosta residents should be prepared for tropical storm force wind gusts up to 60-70 miles per hour for the duration of Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service. 

Wind gusts from Hurricane Michael should end early Thursday morning as winds weaken, according to forecasters.

Valdosta will feel the outer effects of the hurricane as the eye will not pass through the area. The strongest winds will occur until about midnight.

Damage to homes and businesses will primarily come from falling trees, flying shingles or other loose items that may be blown around due to winds, according to the National Weather Service.

Hurricane Michael made landfall in Florida Wednesday with Category 4 strength.

VALDOSTA – Valdosta should expect the severest effects of Hurricane Michael to start between 8-9 p.m. or 10-11 p.m. Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service offices in Tallahassee, Fla.

Then continue through the night, according to weather service forecasters.

Valdosta and South Georgia residents should expect low-end Category 1 force hurricane winds, forecasters said, followed by sustained tropical storm winds.

To be classified Category 1 the storm must have sustained winds of at least 74 mph. 

The eye of the hurricane made landfall mid-afternoon Wednesday and is traveling in a north, northwest direction into Georgia, according to forecasters.