Hurricane Nicole eached the northwestern Bahamas on Wednesday on its way to eastern Florida. According to NHC, the hurricane is around 105 miles (170 km) east of West Palm Beach, Florida.
It is bringing winds of 75 miles per hour (120 km per hour), according to the Miami based forecaster.
The hurricane is expected to strike Florida early on Thursday with damaging winds and heavy rain expected in some places.
On Wednesday evening, Nicole strengthened from a tropical storm into a hurricane as it brought strong winds and a dangerous storm surge to Grand Bahama Island.
Nicole’s centre passed over the Bahamas’ Great Abaco island early on Wednesday afternoon followed by Grand Bahama.
The hurricane may make an initial impact on the southeastern or east-central Florida coast overnight, according to NHC.
Forecasters have also warned that people affected by Nicole shouldn’t focus on the exact track of the storm centre because it is a large storm with “hazards extending well to the north” of its apparently projectory.
A tweet from the NCS office in Melbourne, Florida on Wednesday afternoon warned residents to stay away from beaches.
They said: “Outer bands from Nicole have already started impacting east central FL.
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Over 5.3 million people in Florida’s east coast are under hurricane warnings while 4.1 million are under a hurricane watch.
Following it’s Florida landfall, Nicole is expected to become weaker before moving across the southeastern US on Thursday and Friday.
However, it is still a major threat to Florida with the state still recovering from Storm Ian which struck the west coast in September.