Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Home News World

Stephen Nolan finds himself in eye of the storm as Hermine batters Florida and Georgia

Published 02/09/2016

A hand painted sign on a boarded up bar is seen as Hurricane Hermine nears the Florida coast, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Cedar Key, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
A hand painted sign on a boarded up bar is seen as Hurricane Hermine nears the Florida coast, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Cedar Key, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
This NASA-NOAA GOES East satellite photo taken August 31, 2016 shows Tropical Storm Hermine in the Gulf of Mexico. / AFP PHOTO / NASA-NOAA GOES Project / HO / HO/AFP/Getty Images
CRAWFORDVILLE, FL - AUGUST 31: A dog wades through the shallow water prior to the arrival of tropical storm Hermine at Shell Point Beach August 31, 2016 near Crawfordville, Florida. Areas south of Tallahassee are under mandatory evacuation orders according to the Wakulla County Sheriff's Office. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
Lisa Bolton holds her three-year-old daughter Lois Bolton, both of Manchester, England, during a visit on Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2016, to Clearwater Beach, Fla. The National Hurricane Center in Miami says Tropical Storm Hermine is gaining strength as it rumbles toward Florida's Gulf Coast. (Douglas R. Clifford/Tampa Bay Times via AP)
Andre Anton stops from gathering his families belongings as the rain continues pour inside of his home after a large tree crashed through the roof Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2016, in Tampa, Fla. "We have no place to go right now, trying to figure it out," said Dorman. The National Hurricane Center in Miami says Tropical Storm Hermine is gaining strength as it rumbles toward Florida's Gulf Coast. (Octavio Jones/Tampa Bay Times via AP)
Workers install storm shutters on a store front as they prepare for Tropical Storm Hermine Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Cedar Key, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
Tim Allen, left, and Joe Allen board up the front of an outdoor bar as they prepare for Tropical Storm Hermine Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Cedar Key, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
BRADENTON, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Residents fill sandbags at a local park as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Bradenton, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
Hurricane specialist Eric Blake works at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Senior hurricane specialist Daniel Brown works at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Senior hurricane specialist Richard Pasch works at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Senior hurricane specialist Michael Brennan (L) and hurricane specialist Eric Blake work at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Hurricane specialist Eric Blake works at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Hurricane specialist Eric Blake works at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Holmes Beach, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: The maintenance man at the Sandpiper Resort surveys the rising water as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
BRADENTON, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Rich Rio delivers sandbags to his neighbors John and Robin Isom as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Bradenton, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
BRADENTON, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Rich Rio sandbags the front door of his home as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Bradenton, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Members of Manatee County Marine Rescue come in from surveying the rip currents and weather conditions at Manatee Beach Park as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida.Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
BRADENTON, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Residents load sandbags into their vehicles at a local park as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Bradenton, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 1: In this NOAA handout image, taken by the GOES satellite at UTC: 1650Z shows the tropical storm organizing in the Gulf of Mexico just west of Florida on September 1, 2016. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by NOAA via Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - SEPTEMBER 01: Hurricane specialist Eric Blake (L) and senior hurricane specialist Daniel Brown work at the National Hurricane Center to track the path of Tropical Storm Hermine, which strengthened this morning and is expected to make landfall along Florida's Gulf Coast as a hurricane by by tomorrow on September 1, 2016 in Miami, Florida. The National Hurricane Center forecasters are urging people to be ready for the possibility of the state's first hurricane in nearly 11 years. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Residents of the Sandpiper Resort survey the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into their neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 1: In this NOAA handout image, taken by the GOES satellite at UTC: 1650Z shows the tropical storm organizing in the Gulf of Mexico just west of Florida on September 1, 2016. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by NOAA via Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Doug LeFever inspects the seawall near his home at the Sandpiper Resort as he surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into his neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: A resident of the Sandpiper Resort surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into her neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Residents of the Sandpiper Resort survey the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into their neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Charlie and Brenda Miller photograph their neighbor Doug LeFever as he inspects the seawall near his home at the Sandpiper Resort as he surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into his neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Doug LeFever inspects the seawall near his home at the Sandpiper Resort as he surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into his neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane(Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: A resident of the Sandpiper Resort surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into his neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Charlie and Brenda Miller watch an update on the weather as they monitor the seawall outside their home at the Sandpiper Resort as rising water comes from the Gulf of Mexico into their front yard as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 1: In this NOAA handout image, taken by the GOES satellite at 1315 UTC shows Tropical Storm Hermine gathering strength in the Gulf of Mexico just west of Florida on September 1, 2016. According to NOAA's National Hurricane Center, Tropical Storm Hermine is located about 195 miles south-southwest of Apalachicola, Florida and is heading north-northeast at a speed of approximately 12 miles per hour. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by NOAA via Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Doug LeFever inspects the seawall near his home at the Sandpiper Resort as he surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into his neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
HOLMES BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 1: Residents of the Sandpiper Resort survey the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into their neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
Ground water begins to flood some low lying areas as Tropical Storm Hermine heads inland Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Dekle Beach, Fla. A hurricane warning was in effect for Florida's Big Bend from the Suwannee River to Mexico Beach.(AP Photo/John Raoux)
This NOAA image, taken by GOES East at 1315 UTC on September 1, 2016, shows Tropical Storm Hermine gathering strength in the Gulf of Mexico. Tropical Storm Hermine strengthened into a hurricane September 1, 2016 as it continued churning on a path toward Florida, US forecasters said. At 1:55 pm local time (1855 GMT), data from an Air Force hurricane hunter plane indicated that maximum sustained winds in Hermine were about 75 miles per hour (120 kilometers per hour), the National Hurricane Center said. / AFP PHOTO / NOAA / HO / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NOAA" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS HO/AFP/Getty Images
Hannah Coles, 9, takes a break from riding her bike to feel a strong rain band rain shortly Thursday afternoon, Sept. 1, 2016 in Gulfport, Fla. Coles was taking advantage of the day off from school to play in the rain and flooding. Tropical Storm Hermine strengthened into a hurricane Thursday and steamed toward Florida's Gulf Coast, (John Pendygraft/Tampa Bay Times via AP)
Ground water begins to flood some low areas as Tropical Storm Hermine heads inland Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Dekle Beach, Fla. A hurricane warning was in effect for Florida's Big Bend from the Suwannee River to Mexico Beach. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
SAINT MARKS, FL - SEPTEMBER 01: A person wades through the storm surge from Hurricane Hermine past Bo Lynns Grocery on September 1, 2016 in Saint Marks, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 1: In this NOAA handout image, taken by the GOES East satellite at 1915 UTC, Hurricane Hermine approaches the Gulf Coast of Florida on September 1, 2016. As of 1:00 pm today, Hermine was located about 135 miles south-southwest of Apalachicola, Florida, and was heading north-northeast at a speed of approximately 14 miles per hour. The storm's maximum sustained winds are near 75 miles per hour (making it a category 1 storm) with higher gusts. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by NOAA via Getty Images)
SAINT MARKS, FL - SEPTEMBER 01: A young man and his dog wades in the storm surge from Hurricane Hermaine outside Cooter Stew Cafe on September 1, 2016 in Saint Marks, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
A news reporter doing a stand up near a sea wall in Cedar Key, Fla., is covered by an unexpected wave as Hurricane Hermine nears the Florida coast, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. Hurricane Hermine gained new strength Thursday evening and roared ever closer to Florida's Gulf Coast, where rough surf began smashing against docks and boathouses and people braced for the first direct hit on the state from a hurricane in over a decade. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
In this image made from a video, rough surf smashes the shore as Hurricane Hermine nears the Florida coast, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Carabelle, Fla. Hurricane Hermine gained new strength Thursday evening as it roared closer to Florida's Gulf Coast and people braced for the first direct hit on the state from a hurricane in over a decade. (AP Photo/Joshua Replogle)
***BESTPIX*** SAINT MARKS, FL - SEPTEMBER 01: A young man and his dog wades in the storm surge from Hurricane Hermaine outside Cooter Stew Cafe on September 1, 2016 in Saint Marks, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
SHELL POINT BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 02: A US flag is bent by the wind as the eye of Hurricane Hermine passes overhead in the early morning hours on September 2, 2016 in Shell Point Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine makes landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
SHELL POINT BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 02: People come out to inspect the damage as the eye of Hurricane Hermine passes overhead in the early morning hours on September 2, 2016 in Shell Point Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine makes landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
SHELL POINT BEACH, FL - SEPTEMBER 02: A metal roof lies in the road as the eye of Hurricane Hermine passes overhead in the early morning hours on September 2, 2016 in Shell Point Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine makes landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
Certified nurse assistant Jennifer Smith rides out Hurricane Hermine inside the Hosford County Search and Rescue station doubling as a shelter for local residents as the storm makes land fall on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Hosford, Fla. Hurricane Hermine roared ever closer to Florida's Gulf Coast early Friday, sending battering waves against docks and boathouses as the state braced for its first direct hit from a hurricane in over a decade. (Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)
Pedro Muacaj rests on higher ground in front of a gift shop along a flooded section of Dodecanese Blvd. in Tarpon Springs, Fla. where he was working. Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. The street, which typically floods during heavy reins, was filling quickly at high tide as Tropical Storm Hermine strengthened in the Gulf of Mexico, (Douglas R. Clifford/The Tampa Bay Times via AP)
Cedar Key police chief Virgil Sandlin checks on the downtown area as Hurricane Hermine nears the Florida coast, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in Cedar Key, Fla. Tropical Storm Hermine strengthened into a hurricane Thursday and steamed toward Florida's Gulf Coast, where people put up shutters, nailed plywood across store windows and braced for the first direct hit on the state from a hurricane in over a decade. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
Doug LeFever inspects the seawall near his home at the Sandpiper Resort as he surveys the rising water coming from the Gulf of Mexico into his neighborhood as winds and storm surge associated with Tropical Storm Hermine impact the area on September 1, 2016 at in Holmes Beach, Florida. Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of Florida's Gulf Coast as Hermine is expected to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)

Stephen Nolan is used to creating a storm himself, but this time he has found himself trying to dodge a hurricane.

Hurricane Hermine made landfall in Florida in the early hours of Friday morning bringing heavy rain, high winds and thousands of power outages.

In response a state of emergency has been called with some residents urged to prepare for evacuation.

The Category 1 storm hit just east of St Marks with winds of around 80mph, according to the US National Hurricane Centre, but later weakened to a tropical storm as it moved inland.

It is the first hurricane to hit the state in 11 years.

And who should find himself close to one of America's biggest weather stories, only our own Stephen Nolan.

The BBC broadcaster is holidaying in Miami, south of where the Hurricane hit, although it looks like he may have avoided the worst.

 

Discussing the presenter's stay in Florida on Friday morning's Nolan show, Linda McAuley said: "To think of all the worries he had before he went out with the Zika virus, the mosquitoes and the heat and now it's going to be the rain.

"But I am sure he is inside looking after himself."

<<< If you have been caught up in the storm contact us here >>>

Hermine weakened as it moved into southern Georgia, the Hurricane Centre said, as it moved north-north-east at nearly 14mph.

In Florida's Pasco County, north of Tampa, authorities said flooding forced 18 people from their homes in Green Key and Hudson Beach. Pasco County Fire Rescue and sheriff's deputies used high-water vehicles to rescue people from rising water.

In Wakulla County, south of Tallahassee, a couple suffered minor injuries during the storm when they drove into a tree that had fallen in the road, county administrator Dustin Hinkel said. He said a storm surge of 8ft to 10ft damaged docks and flooded coastal roads.

As Hermine moved north, Georgia Power estimated about 19,000 homes and businesses were without power state-wide. Many of those were in Valdosta and surrounding Lowndes County, about 15 miles north of the Georgia-Florida border.

Lowndes County spokeswoman Paige Dukes said crews were dealing with fallen trees and snapped power lines, but no injuries had been reported. Winds exceeding 55mph had been recorded in the county, with 4in to 5in of rain, she said.

The last hurricane to strike Florida was Wilma, a powerful Category 3 storm that arrived on October 24 2005. It swept across the Everglades and struck heavily populated south Florida, causing five deaths in the state and an estimated 23 billion dollars in damage.

Residents on some islands and other low-lying, flood-prone areas in Florida had been urged to clear out on Thursday. Flooding was expected across a wide area of the marshy coastline of the Big Bend - the mostly rural and lightly populated corner where the Florida peninsula meets the Panhandle.

Florida governor Rick Scott warned of the danger of strong storm surges, high winds, downed trees and power outages, and urged people to move to inland shelters if necessary and make sure they have enough food, water and medicine.

"You can rebuild a home, you can rebuild property, you cannot rebuild a life," he said at a news conference, adding: "We are going to see a lot of flooding."

Mr Scott, who declared an emergency in 51 counties, said 6,000 National Guardsmen were poised to mobilise for the storm's aftermath. The governors of Georgia and North Carolina also declared states of emergency.

After pushing through Georgia, Hermine is expected to move into the Carolinas and up the East Coast with the potential for heavy rain and deadly flooding.

If you have been caught up in the storm contact us at digital.editorial@belfasttelegraph.co.uk.

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph