MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - A search and rescue team from Tennessee has been deployed to Alabama ahead of the expected arrival of Hurricane Michael.

The Memphis Fire Department says the Federal Emergency Management Agency has asked Tennessee Task Force Type 3 to report to Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama.

The department says a team of 80 firefighters, doctors, engineers and dog handlers departed Tuesday.

The task force will be responsible for wide-area and swift water search and rescue efforts.

At least 120,000 people along the Florida Panhandle were ordered to clear out on Tuesday as Hurricane Michael rapidly picked up steam in the Gulf of Mexico and closed in with winds of 120 mph and a potential storm surge of 13 feet.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.