Airports and theme parks closed Wednesday in advance of Nicole, a rare NOV hurricane that made landfall on Florida's Atlantic coast early morning on Thursday, 10NOV.
As it approached the U.S. mainland, the storm was briefly upgraded to Category 1 hurricane status, before being downgraded again to a tropical storm as it made its way across east-central Florida around 4 am.
That downgrade comes as a relief to Floridians still recovering from Hurricane Ian in SEP.
Despite the downgrade, landfall of Nicole came with sustained winds of around 75 mph, local NBCNews reports the National Hurricane Center announced, along with heavy rains. By dawn, reports say nearly 200,000 residents were without electricity.
The hurricane center has warned of "large and damaging waves" on the Atlantic coast, along with a "dangerous storm surge" in central and northern Florida, as well as coastal Georgia on the Atlantic side and along the Gulf Coast of Florida.
A state of emergency was declared for 45 Florida counties. Flooding had already begun on Wednesday afternoon in advance of Nicole's landfall.
MCO closed operations down late Wednesday afternoon, and MIA remained open, while warning of cancellations and delays. One report Thursday morning says 900 flights were cancelled Wednesday and 1000 Thursday.
Orlando's Walt Disney World and Universal Resort Orlando closed Wednesday afternoon, but anticipate re-opening Thursday.