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Nicole expected to become a hurricane before making landfall along SE Florida coast

Credit: FPREN
Credit: FPREN

This article was updated at noon Monday with additional information from Volusia County.

Subtropical Storm Nicole is forecast to become a hurricane before making landfall along the southeast coast of Florida later this week.

The 11 a.m. track from the National Hurricane Center has the storm potentially coming ashore near West Palm Beach late Wednesday night or early Friday morning.

[caption id="attachment_205445" align="alignleft" width="400"]

Credit: NHC[/caption]

Nearly the whole state is covered by the hurricane center's cone of uncertainty as Nicole is expected to cross the peninsula and then double back across North Florida.

The National Weather Service issued a Hurricane Watch Monday morning for the southeast coast of Florida, including Brevard County.

A hurricane watch indicates that hurricane-force winds are possible within the next 48 hours.

A tropical storm watch is in effect from Volusia County northward into Georgia. Lake, Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties are also under a tropical storm watch.

There's a storm surge watch for coast Volusia southward. Condition in the surf zone will be "extremely dangerous," the National Weather Service advises.

Significant impacts can be expected in east Central Florida, according to the weather service bulletin. "Preparations should begin now for at least strong tropical storm conditions by mid-week."

Conditions could be begin to deteriorate as early as Monday night because of Nicole's large wind field.

Seminole County preparations

Seminole County announced Monday morning that sandbag operations are underway ahead of potential impacts from Subtropical Storm Nicole.

Self-serve sites are available. At county locations there will be help for elderly people and those with special needs.

(Up to 15 bags per household)
- Old Geneva Volunteer Fire Station, 217 Second St., Geneva (Monday 10 a.m.-7 p.m., and Tuesday 8 a.m.-7 p.m.)
- Lake Monroe Wayside Park, 4150 Highway 17, Sanford (Monday 10 a.m.-7 p.m. and Tuesday 8 a.m.-7 p.m.)
- BOOMBAH Sports Complex, 3450 E. Lake Mary Blvd., Sanford (Monday 10 a.m.-7 p.m. and Tuesday 8 a.m.-7 p.m.)

(Check with the city for details and hours)
- City of Longwood: Candyland Park, 599 Longdale Ave.
- City of Winter Springs: Central Winds Park, 1000 Central Winds Drive
- City of Altamonte: Merrill Park, 985 Merrill Park Drive
-City of Sanford: Public Works Complex, 800 W. Fulton St.
- City of Oviedo - Public Works Complex, 1725 Evans St. (Monday 12-5 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.)

Volusia County prepares

Volusia County Emergency Director Jim Judge said on Facebook that the county needs "to take this storm very seriously because it could cause more coastal erosion, which could be devastating to our beachfront properties impacted by Hurricane Ian."

He expects rainfall amounts "anywhere from of 4 to 8 inches through Friday that could cause flooding, along with tropical storm force winds that could cause widespread power outages.”

The county will provide sand and empty sandbags to residents from noon to 4 p.m. Monday and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday in the parking lot of the Volusia County Correctional Facility, 1354 Indian Lake Road, Daytona Beach.

Some cities will also provide sand and sandbags. To learn about additional sand and sandbag distribution, cvisit volusia.org/pin.

The county says other coastal residents should consider moving to a safer location.

And people are urged stay off the beach until further notice because of wind, high surf and damaged beach structures. The showers and bathrooms will be closed.

County staff is maintaining continuous communication with the Florida Division of Emergency Management, the National Weather Service, FEMA and our local municipalities. The Emergency Operations Center will transition to partial activation if conditions warrant.

Tipping fees have been dropped at the Seminole County landfill, 1930 E. Osceola Road in Geneva. If possible, residents are asked to remove debris that hasn't been picked up already in order to prevent possible projectiles during high winds.

Subtropical Storm Nicole forecast to potentially cross Florida on Thursday

(Original article) Subtropical Storm Nicole formed overnight and is forecast to make its presence known in Florida this week.

Tropical-storm-force winds are expected on the Atlantic Coast as early as Wednesday, according to meteorologist Justin Ballard with the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network.

"Subtropical Storm Nicole is currently located about midway between the Turks and Caicos and Bermuda, bringing with it winds of up to 45 mph," Ballard said. "Nicole will be moving through the Bahamas Wednesday evening, with winds of nearly hurricane strength making their way to the Florida east coast during the predawn hours Thursday.

"Aside from the wind, areas hard-hit by Ian will get a one-two punch of additional heavy rainfall and storm surge."

Nicole is forecast to make landfall between the Space Coast and South Florida. But anyone along the east coast should to be prepared for impacts.

The intial track has the storm potentially crossing Florida on Thurdsay.

The hurricane season lasts through November 30th.

Joe Byrnes came to WMFE/WMFV from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.
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