Hurricane Nicole is expected to hit the archipelago of Bermuda on Thursday, according to weather reports. A hurricane warning has been issued by officials as meteorologist predict Nicole may reach Category 3 storm status, which would make Nicole the fourth hurricane to pass within 65 nautical miles of Bermuda since the 1950s, The Weather Channel reported.
As of Wednesday morning, Nicole was about 320 miles south-southwest of Bermuda. The storm is expected to veer more east of north, which could result in a direct hit on the island, bringing strong storm winds, heavy rainfall and storm surge. Winds ranging between 39 and 73 miles per hour are slated to arrive in Bermuda on Wednesday night, and winds are expected to increase to 74 miles per hour or higher by early Thursday morning, according to reports. Rainfall could accumulate up to 8 inches throughout Thursday while storm surge may result in coastal flooding. Large waves are also expected to have an impact on the coastline.
AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski said the non-tropical system that is fueling Nicole to move northward is the same system that pushed Hurricane Matthew away from the United States. This is the second time since Nicole formed in the Atlantic on Oct. 4 that it has upgraded from tropical storm to a hurricane. On Wednesday, Nicole ranked as a Category 2 storm.
Although Nicole’s path past Bermuda is unclear, The Weather Network predicted that the storm could be pushed northward along the North America coast, possibly making landfall near the eastern coast of Newfoundland on Sunday or Monday. If warmer than average sea surface temperatures remain, Nicole could remain strong enough to hit southwest Canada with heavy rain, strong winds and high surf by Saturday.
Meanwhile, in the United States, North Carolina is still feeling the impacts of Hurricane Matthew after it ravished the Carolinas, Florida and the Caribbean last week.