After making landfall in Florida early Thursday morning as a hurricane, Nicole continues to bring heavy rain and wind across the state. From Southern Florida up to the Tampa coast, just about everyone in the state has been experiencing elements of the now tropical storm.
“Our power has been out since about ten this morning,” said Lake George visitor Jeremy Kettleman, who witnessed the storm firsthand from his lakefront rental. “From about three in the morning up to three in the afternoon, the wind was howling, blowing down the leaves and branches. Water was churning all night, no major flooding around the east side of the lake here.”
While inland Florida was largely spared from catastrophic flooding and wind damage, wind gusts reached up to 70 miles per hour overnight, taking down branches from trees and scattering lighter debris. Coastal damage was overall more intense, though power is still out for many on the inland.
“Compared to Ian this was not nearly as wild,” Kettleman continued. “We were in Orlando for that. Obviously there is a major difference between a category one and a category four storm, but people need to still take any storm that makes it to a hurricane seriously. Pretty much anything and everything can happen.”
Now as a Tropical Storm Nicole, whose November formation and landfall are historic for their lateness, is expected to continue into mainland Georgia and the Carolinas.
“The National Weather Service warned us there could have been tornadoes in this one,” Kettleman noted in conclusion. “I did not see any or hear of any personally, but again, between that and how late this storm was, I am not surprised at anything anymore.”