Hurricane watch – As Nicole approaches Florida and strengthens, a tropical storm watch has been issued for Tampa Bay.
Nicole was expected to become a hurricane before reaching the state’s east coast, according to the National Hurricane Center’s 7 p.m. advisory.
Nicole was expected to strengthen into a hurricane before reaching the coast, according to the National Hurricane Center’s 7 p.m. advisory.
That would be historic because no storm has ever made landfall on Florida’s east coast this late in the Atlantic hurricane season, according to Colorado State University meteorologist Philip Klotzbach, who tweeted Tuesday.
On Wednesday, Tropical Storm Nicole is expected to intensify into a hurricane
A tropical storm warning has been issued for the entire Tampa Bay area as Tropical Storm Nicole prepares to make landfall on Florida’s east coast by Wednesday night, most likely as a Category 1 hurricane.
According to a morning update from the National Hurricane Center, tropical storm conditions have already begun on Florida’s east coast and will begin on the state’s west coast Wednesday night.
According to an 11:55 a.m. update from the National Hurricane Center, Nicole made landfall on Great Abaco Island in the Bahamas with wind speeds of about 70 mph. Wind speeds are just 4 mph short of a Category 1 storm.
Several schools and counties in the Tampa Bay area have announced that they will be closed on Thursday due to Tropical Storm Nicole. Pasco County Schools announced the closure on Tuesday, and Hillsborough County Schools did the same on Wednesday. Pinellas County has not yet announced any school closings.
Hillsborough County also announced Wednesday that a shelter would be opened for residents worried about Tropical Storm Nicole.
According to Austen Flannery, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Tampa Bay office, people in the Tampa Bay area should have completed their storm preparations by Wednesday afternoon.
According to Flannery, Nicole has a very large wind field, which means that the storm’s effects will be felt throughout Florida.
“At this point, I’m not even showing you the track forecast because it doesn’t matter,” Flannery said on the Weather Service’s Facebook page during a Facebook Live. “Everyone is going to feel the effects of this system, especially when it comes to the wind aspect of things in the area.”
9 Spectrum Bay News The Tampa Bay area will see the strongest winds — up to 30 to 40 mph with gusts up to 50 mph — by late Wednesday night and Thursday morning, according to weather.