Florida coast battered by Hurricane Hermine

    Florida coast battered by Hurricane Hermine

    Sept.2, Florida: Northern Florida has been battered by Tropical storm Hermine early on Friday, becoming the first hurricane to hit the state in 11 years.

    Hermine hit the Florida Gulf Coast as a category one hurricane, bringing with it a heavy storm surge.

    Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for 51 counties as residents were braced for the dangerous storm. Wind gusts reached 80mph (130km/h), the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.

    According to the National Weather Service, two hours after making landfall, as it moved inland, Hermine was downgraded to a tropical storm.

    Police in Taylor County, that has a population of more than 20,000, said the storm had inflicted "severe damage". City officials in the state capital Tallahassee, where people were urged to move to higher ground to avoid flash floods, said at least 70,000 homes were now without power.

    According to reports, South of Tallahassee, the town of Cedar Key saw a 6.6ft (two-metre) storm surge, raising high tide to almost 10ft. Images from the town posted on social media showed significant flooding.

    The Oslo Times International News Network