Hermine Kills 2, Causes Severe Coastal Damage, Flooding Along Eastern Seaboard | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Hermine Kills 2, Causes Severe Coastal Damage, Flooding Along Eastern Seaboard

"This is not a beach weekend for anyone in the Mid-Atlantic to the northeast," said Eric Blake, a hurricane specialist at the National Hurricane Center



    The Storm Ranger 4 motorcade captured large waves while passing over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. (Published Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016)

    The once-and-future Hurricane Hermine regained strength Saturday as it moved slowly up the Eastern Seaboard and made a mess of the holiday weekend. 

    Hermine already caused two deaths, damaged properties and left hundreds of thousands without electricity from Florida to Virginia. It spawned a tornado in North Carolina and closed beaches as far north as New York. 

    "This is not a beach weekend for anyone in the Mid-Atlantic to the northeast," said Eric Blake, a hurricane specialist at the National Hurricane Center in Miami. 

    Hermine rose up over the Gulf of Mexico and hit Florida on Friday as a Category 1 hurricane before weakening to a tropical storm across Georgia. 

    By 11 p.m. Saturday, Hermine's top sustained winds were up to 70 mph as it moved east-northeast at 12 mph. The storm was centered about 205 miles southeast of Ocean City, Maryland. Tropical-storm-force winds extended outward up to 205 miles from the center.

    Forecasters expected Hermine to regain hurricane force on Sunday as it travels up the coast before weakening again to a tropical storm by Tuesday. 

    Governors all along the coast announced emergency preparations. Tropical storm warnings were in effect as far north as Connecticut. 

    And since sea levels have risen up to a foot due to global warming, the storm surges pushed by Hermine could be even more damaging, climate scientists say. 

    An image of Tropical Storm Hermine on Sept. 3, 2016.

    Michael Mann at Pennsylvania State University noted that this century's one-foot sea-level rise in New York City meant 25 more square miles flooded during Superstorm Sandy, causing billions more in damage. 

    "We are already experiencing more and more flooding due to climate change in every storm," said Michael Oppenheimer, a geosciences professor at Princeton University. "And it's only the beginning." 

    The winds and rain were so strong Saturday in North Carolina that all bridges to the Outer Banks were closed for several hours following a deadly accident over the intracoastal waterway.

    Tyrrell County Sheriff Darryl Liverman told the Virginian-Pilot that high winds tipped over an 18-wheeler, killing its driver and shutting down the U.S. 64 bridge. 

    Driver Killed After Strong Winds Overturn Truck

    [NATL] Driver Killed After Strong Winds Overturn Truck
    A man died early Saturday after a tractor trailer overturned because of high winds from Tropical Storm Hermine on the Lindsay C. Warren Bridge east of Columbia, North Carolina. The drawbridge on U.S. Highway 64 over the Alligator River connects Tyrrell and Dare counties. (Courtesy WAVY's Joe Fisher) (Published Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016)

    And on Hatteras Island in the Outer Banks, a small tornado spawned by Hermine knocked over two trailers and injured four people, authorities said. 

    Earlier in Florida, a homeless man died from a falling tree. 

    Hermine's timing couldn't be worse for coastal communities hoping for revenue from Labor Day events. 

    "This weekend would normally be a parking lot," said Jim Derrick, whose family businesses include a mini golf course, sea shell store, indoor bounce house and ice cream shop in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, where the beach was closed to foot traffic and swimming was prohibited Saturday. 

    Hermine Batters Coastal Communities

    [NATL] Hermine Batters Coastal Communities
    Anna Marie and Pete Coady, from Frisco, North Carolina, says their street is completely flooded and it looks like their home is "basically in the sound." Their house is raised up 10 feet on stilts, but the water has risen to at least 4 feet already and is showing no signs of receding. Meanwhile, in Virginia, strong winds ripped the siding off a building in Virginia Beach Saturday. (Courtesy Anna Marie and Pete Coady/@WXSLAGES) (Published Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016)

    He called the weekend "definitely disappointing," although his bounce house was packed. 

    Elsewhere along Hermine's path, people were having decidedly less fun. 

    In Savannah, Georgia, Bacon Fest was canceled Friday and Saturday's Craft Brew Fest was moved indoors. 

    In Virginia Beach, the storm forced Bruce Springsteen to move a Saturday night concert to Monday. Swimmers were ordered out of the surf in New York and New Jersey. And Amtrak cancelled or altered some service as the storm approached. 

    Tropical Storm Hermine Takes Aim at East Coast

    [NATL] Tropical Storm Hermine Takes Aim at East Coast
    Hermine, the first hurricane in 11 years to make landfall in Florida, continues to churn across the southeast as it barrels up the Eastern seaboard. The National Hurricane Center predicted it would regain hurricane strength late in the weekend after emerging over the Atlantic Ocean. NBC News' Jay Gary reports. (Published Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016)

    "This situation may become too large in scope to be handled by the normal county and municipal operating services in Ocean County, Atlantic County and Cape May County, and this situation may spread to other parts of the State," New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said in declaring a state of emergency for the three shore counties.

    Joyce Harper and her husband, of Berkely Township, New Jersey, canceled Monday's family barbecue and took their three young daughters to the Seaside Heights boardwalk to "burn off some energy" ahead of the storm. 

    "If it's as bad as they expect, then we're all going to be indoors for a couple days. I love my kids, but two days is a long time to be together in close spaces," she said.