Hurricane Nicole whipped through Florida on Thursday, a rare November storm that crashed huge waves along the coast, collapsed houses into the Atlantic Ocean, required the evacuation of unstable waterfront condo buildings and washed away roads and beaches….At least four deaths were attributed to the storm as it crossed the peninsula, and then swung offshore over the Gulf of Mexico and turned north, going back over land in the Big Bend region of Florida, just east of the Panhandle.
The storm mostly spared Southwest Florida, the area worst hit by Hurricane Ian, which slammed into the state as a Category 4 storm in September. But Ian was such a large system that it also damaged parts of the Atlantic coast, leaving them particularly vulnerable to Nicole, a far weaker storm.
The double whammy was most evident in Volusia County, where officials said that building inspectors had deemed 24 hotels and condominiums unsafe, leading to the evacuation of about 500 mostly older residents, according to a spokeswoman for Daytona Beach Shores. At least 25 houses in Wilbur-by-the-Sea, an unincorporated community on a barrier island in the Daytona Beach area, were also evacuated.