NEW YORK – Hurricane Nicole lashed Florida with relentless wind, rain and waves while making landfall in the Sunshine State as a Category 1 hurricane Thursday morning, but its remnants will have far-reaching impacts along the East Coast.
Nicole first made landfall Wednesday in the northwestern Bahamas before crossing the east coast of Florida with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph.
The FOX Forecast Center warned that dangerous conditions will not only continue in the Southeast on Friday, but the threat of flooding rain and isolated tornadoes will move northward up the Eastern Seaboard later Friday and into Saturday.
East Coast flood and tornado threats
Nicole's remnants will continue to move north, bringing heavy rainfall to the East Coast and increasing the potential for flooding.
On Friday, the rain will extend from the Southeast to the mid-Atlantic, as what is left of Nicole begins the process of merging with the same storm system that brought a blizzard to the northern Plains on Thursday. This will lead to a Veterans Day washout for many along the East Coast, with moderate to heavy rain and gusty winds.
In addition to the rain, a few tornadoes are possible from central and eastern North Carolina into southern and eastern Virginia.
Friday night and into Saturday, the rain will be focused mainly across the Northeast, including New England. Any outdoor plans for Friday evening are likely to be impacted.
The rain will be accompanied by gusty winds, which may topple smaller trees in wet soil. A few power outages can be expected, but widespread outages are not expected with this activity.
The FOX Forecast Center said a widespread 2 to 3 inches of rain is expected along the path of Nicole's remnants, with localized amounts as high as 6 inches not ruled out.
The tropical nature of the rain means there will be some intense rainfall rates that will likely lead to a few areas of flash flooding. Additionally, the widespread nature of the rain is likely to lead to rises on some rivers, which might prompt evacuations in commonly flooded areas.
Along the immediate East Coast, life-threatening surf and dangerous rip currents are expected through Sunday.
Some minor coastal flooding is also possible during high tides, but widespread, significant coastal flooding is not expected.