JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Hurricane Hermine made landfall about 1:30 a.m. Friday in Florida's Gulf Coast just east of St. Marks with 80 mph winds, according to the National Hurricane Center. It's the first hurricane to directly strike Florida in more than a decade, roaring in from the northwest Gulf Coast with strong gusts and heavy rains.
Latest advisory as of 11 p.m.
- Sustained winds: 50 mph with 65 mph gusts
- 30 miles west-southwest of Wilmington, North Carolina
- Movement: Northeast at 22 mph
- Pressure: 997 millibars
- Cecil Commerce: 69 mph
- Gainesville: 51 mph
- Jeykll Island: 61 mph
- Jax Beach: 48 mph
- NAS JAX: 52 mph
- Lake City: 43 mph
- Crecent Beach: 52 mph
- Mayport: 52 mph
- Brunswick: 51 mph
- Waycross: 57 mph
- Arlington 51 mph
- Downtown: 51 mph
- St. Augustine: 46 mph
- Homerville: 41 mph
- Live Oak: 45 mph
- Jacksonville Int'l Airport: 45 mph
Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for 51 Florida counties and activated 6,000 members from the Florida National Guard, who are ready to be deployed.
Here is the NHC's 11 p.m. Friday update:
Hermine is moving toward the northeast near 22 mph (35 km/h) and this general motion is expected to continue with some decrease in forward speed through Saturday night. A gradual turn toward the north is expected on Sunday. On the forecast track, the center of Hermine should move across eastern North Carolina tonight and emerge over the Atlantic on Saturday. Maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph (85 km/h) with higher gusts. Strengthening is forecast after the center moves offshore, and Hermine could be near hurricane intensity by late Sunday. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 185 miles (295 km) mainly to the south and east of the center. NOAA buoy 41013 recently reported sustained winds of 45 mph (72 km/h) and a wind gust of 51 mph (83 km/h). The estimated minimum central pressure is 997 mb (29.44 inches). WIND: Tropical storm conditions will continue to spread northward within the warning area along the Atlantic coast through Sunday. Tropical storm conditions are possible in the watch area by late Sunday or Sunday night. STORM SURGE: The combination of a storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. There is a danger of life-threatening inundation during the next 24 hours in the Hampton Roads area. Persons within this area should take all necessary actions to protect life and property from rising water. Promptly follow all instructions, including evacuation orders, from local officials. There is also the possibility of life-threatening inundation during the next 48 hours at most coastal locations between the North Carolina/Virginia border and Bridgeport, Connecticut. RAINFALL: Hermine is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 4 to 8 inches from east-central to eastern North Carolina, far southeast Virginia into the coastal sections of the Delmarva peninsula and coastal southern New Jersey through Sunday. These rains may cause life-threatening floods and flash floods. Heavy rains may affect coastal northern New Jersey and Long Island Sunday night into early Monday. Rainbands well to the south of Hermine may produce additional isolated rainfall totals of 3 to 5 inches over north Florida tonight into early Saturday. TORNADOES: A tornado or two remains possible overnight across the North Carolina Outer Banks.
As expected, the storm produced wind gusts area wide between 40 and 60 mph with one wind gust as high as 69 mph at Cecil Commerce at 7 a.m. Friday.
The winds will be elevated through the evening hours, fading overnight. Expect periods of isolated showers, which may produce some more gusty winds and driving rains.
Otherwise, expect a few rays of sunshine this afternoon as the storm pulls off to the north. Highs will remain in the mid 80s Friday with squally weather moving north into Georgia.