Hurricane Hermine hit Florida’s panhandle with fierce winds and heavy rain, leaving more than 170,000 without power according to Fox News.

“This is a life-threatening situation,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott said on Thursday as the storm approached. “It’s going to be a lot of risk. Right now, I want everybody to be safe.”

Hermine is the first hurricane to directly hit the Sunshine State in more than a decade. In a preemptive measure, Scott said that 6,000 National Guardsmen in Florida are ready to mobilize after the storm passes and ordered many state government offices to close at noon.

As of 7 a.m. CST on Friday, Hermine was centered about 35 miles northeast of Valdosta, Georgia, and moving north-northeast near 14 mph.

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

A few hours after landfall, Hermine had weakened into a tropical storm, according to the National Hurricane Center.

“This motion is expected to continue today and Saturday,” the National Hurricane Center said. “On the forecast track, the center of Hermine should continue to move farther inland across southeastern Georgia today and into the Carolinas tonight and Saturday.”

To get live updates of Hurricane Hermine, click here

 

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