MIAMI — On Tuesday, Tropical Storm Nicole roared toward the western Bahamas and Florida’s Atlantic coastline. Forecasters predicted that during the next several days, Nicole will strengthen into a hurricane.
There are still a number of watches and advisories in place. Many communities are still feeling the affects of Hurricane Ian, which made landfall on Florida’s southwest Gulf Coast in late September as a Category 4 hurricane before dumping massive amounts of rain on most of the state’s central region. Forecasters forewarned of the possibility of severe rain in areas still recovering from Ian’s flooding.
According to a warning from the National Hurricane Center in Miami, there are hurricane warnings in force for the Abacos, Berry Islands, Bimini, and Grand Bahama Island. In addition, the Bahamas’ Andros Island, New Province, and Eleuthera were still under a tropical storm warning.
Volusia County Manager George Recktenwald declared that “both property and lives are directly threatened by this oncoming storm.” Because of Hurricane Ian, our infrastructure is particularly susceptible along the coast.
According to Eliane Hall, a hotel employee on the island of Great Abaco in the Bahamas, there were lengthy lineups forming at gas stations and food stores earlier on Tuesday.
Florida should experience the storm either late Wednesday or early Thursday.
Hurricane warnings were issued for a significant stretch of Florida’s Atlantic Coast by Tuesday afternoon, from Boca Raton to north of Daytona Beach. There are tropical storm warnings in effect for further Florida coastline locations, all the way up to Altamaha Sound, Georgia. Tropical storm watches are in force throughout Florida’s Gulf Coast from Bonita Beach in southwestern Florida to the Ochlockonee River in the Panhandle.
The storm will directly impact several areas of the Bahamas.
In addition to opening more than twenty shelters across the archipelago on Tuesday, Bahamas officials closed schools and government facilities in Abaco, Bimini, the Berry Islands, and Grand Bahama.
As the storm neared, authorities advised shantytown dwellers to seek safe shelter because airports and seaports would close and not reopen until Thursday.
Nicole is expected to directly impact communities in Abaco that are still recuperating from Dorian.
The director of the emergency management authority, Capt. Stephen Russell, stated, “We don’t have time to beg and plead for people to move.
Residents in some counties in Florida could obtain sandbags. Although no mandatory evacuation orders had been issued as of late Tuesday morning in Indian River County, which is located north of West Palm Beach, shelters were scheduled to open at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, according to spokesman Mason Kozac.
Residents will be required to “have a talk with themselves about whether they need to leave or not” before participating in any evacuations, according to Kozac.
According to officials, 52,000 inhabitants of mobile homes and 67,000 residents on barrier islands are affected by the Palm Beach County’s mandatory evacuation order. According to officials, shelters along the coast began to open at 7 a.m. on Wednesday.
As the storm approaches, numerous counties in Florida will close their schools. Some businesses have announced closings through Friday, which is already a holiday due to Veteran’s Day. The decision to cancel classes on Thursday has been made by other districts. With 70,000 students and 12,000 staff members, the University of Central Florida is one of the biggest universities in the United States. On Wednesday and Thursday, it was closed.
On Thursday, Disney World’s two miniature golf courses and Typhoon Lagoon water park west of Orlando were scheduled to close.
Officials are worried that the approaching storm could bring further flooding and wind damage to Seminole County, which is located north of Orlando. Hurricane Ian caused catastrophic flooding there.
Alan Harris, the emergency manager for Seminole County, stated at a news conference on Tuesday that “the water on the ground has saturated the root structures of many trees. The winds might bring down trees and those could bring down electrical lines.”
The storm was 395 miles (640 kilometers) east of West Palm Beach, Florida, and 285 miles (460 kilometers) northeast of the northwest Bahamas around 4 p.m. on Tuesday. It was traveling at a speed of 10 mph (17 kph), with sustained winds reaching 65 mph (100 kph).
Tropical Storm Eta, which made landfall at Cedar Key on the state’s Gulf Coast on November 12, 2020, was the last storm to hit Florida in November.
The first hurricane was the Yankee Hurricane in 1935, and the second was Hurricane Kate, a Category 2 storm that made landfall in Florida’s Panhandle in 1985.
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