Nicole leaves East Coast after historic late season hurricane strike
Hurricane Nicole made landfall along Florida’s east coast early Thursday morning, killing at least five people and causing millions of damage in its wake.
But even if Nicole is a shell of her own, the system will bring driving rain and gusty winds to the northeast through Saturday.
The National Hurricane Center said the center of Nicole moved ashore at 3 a.m. Thursday, just south of Vero Beach, Florida. Nicole was packing maximum sustained winds of 75 mph, making it a Category 1 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.
Shortly after making landfall, Nicole was downgraded to a tropical storm as it began to weaken over the Florida peninsula. It then weakened into a tropical depression over the southeastern United States on Thursday evening.
Hurricane Yankee of 1935 was the last time a hurricane made landfall in November along Florida’s east coast. Hurricane Kate of 1985, which made landfall on November 21 along the Florida Panhandle, was the last November hurricane to make landfall anywhere in the United States.
Houses destroyed by the waves, hundreds of thousands in the dark
At least five deaths in Florida have been attributed to Nicole.
Orange County Sheriff’s Office officials said two people were electrocuted by a downed power line early Thursday in Orlando, Florida.
Two others were killed in a car accident on the Florida Turnpike.
A fifth person lost consciousness trying to ride out the storm on a yacht in Cocoa Beach, Florida, and later died in a hospital.
In Volusia County, dozens of beachfront buildings and homes were badly damaged as relentless high waves took advantage of a beach defense weakened by September’s Hurricane Ian and washed away large pieces from the beach.
Officials said 24 condos and hotels, including 10 buildings with at least 10 stories, are now unsafe and structurally unsafe, while another 25 homes have already suffered significant damage or are threatened by the invading waves in the Wilbur-By -The-Sea neighborhood along the east coast of Florida.
Several sections of the A1A coastal highway were washed away along the hurricane’s path.
Major coastal flooding has been reported along Florida’s east coast, where a NOAA tide gauge in Port Canaveral, Florida recorded up to 3.6 feet of flooding above normal high tide. Thursday morning.
Between 2 and 3 feet of flooding above normal high tide was also seen from northeast Florida to the Georgia and South Carolina coasts, including Charleston, South Carolina.
Additionally, the St. Johns River in northeast Florida experienced significant flooding Thursday morning as water levels in Astor, Florida approached records set during Hurricane Ian plus early this fall.
More than 300,000 power customers in Florida lost power at Nicole Heights, but that number had dropped to around 37,000 by Friday morning.
Wind gusts from the hurricane exceeded 80 mph at some locations along Florida’s east coast.
Kennedy Space Center recorded a wind gust of 86 mph, while Daytona Beach recorded a gust of 84 mph, Cape Canaveral reached 79 mph, Melbourne reached 73 mph and Orlando reached 63 mph. Jacksonville reported a wind gust of 56 mph – its second highest November gust on record.
FOX Weather’s Robert Ray reported live Thursday morning from Daytona Beach, Fla., near where the 84 mph gust of wind was reported as the center of Hurricane Nicole crashed ashore.
What are Nicole’s impacts?
Nicole will continue to produce heavy rain as it moves up the east coast through Saturday.
As Nicole’s remains move northeastern United States, areas from the northern mid-Atlantic region to parts of New York State and New England are expected to receive 1 at 3 inches of precipitation.
Heavy rains could lead to flash flooding in parts of Appalachia, Upper Ohio Valley, Mid-Atlantic, New York State and New England through Saturday.
Nicole has made landfall twice in the Bahamas
Nicole first made landfall just before noon Wednesday on Great Abaco Island in the northwest Bahamas. It was the first named November storm to make landfall in the Bahamas in 15 years, according to the FOX Forecast Center.
The previous one was Noel, which made landfall as a tropical storm on Andros Island on November 1, 2007. Before that, it was Category 1 Hurricane Michelle, which also made landfall on Andros Island. ‘Andros on November 5, 2001.
Nicole intensified into a Category 1 hurricane on Wednesday evening as it made landfall in the northwestern Bahamas around 6 p.m. on Grand Bahama Island, where a 61 mph wind gust was recorded.
Artemis weathers the storm but needs minor repairs
While Kennedy Space Center recorded a gust of 86 mph, wind gauges atop the towers near NASA’s $4 billion moon rocket recorded gusts of over 90 mph, nearly 100 mph, which passed the threshold to leave the rocket on the launch pad.
But a NASA spokesperson said it appears the Artemis rocket weathered the storm with only minor damage « such as loose putty and tears in the weather coatings ». Teams are preparing for the rocket’s scheduled launch on November 16.
Air travel on Earth also remained a challenge in the Southeast. Some airports in Nicole’s path, including Orlando, Melbourne, Palm Beach and Daytona Beach in Florida, closed on Wednesday. Miami, Tampa and Jacksonville remained open.
The storm closed many central Florida theme parks earlier than usual on Wednesday because of Nicole. Walt Disney World and Universal Studios closed Wednesday afternoon but reopened later Thursday. SeaWorld and Busch Gardens remained closed through Friday.
Tornado storm cells move through Virginia
Dozens of tornado warnings were issued across the mid-Atlantic on Friday as bands of Nicole moved in.
A storm chaser captured video of a possible tornado in central Virginia near Interstate 85.
Early indications are that very few storms have produced actual tornadoes, but National Weather Service offices will make the final decision on the number of formations.