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'Life-threatening' Hurricane Hermine first in decade to strike Florida

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A US flag is battered by the wind as the eye of Hurricane Hermine passes overhead in Shell Point Beach, Florida. (Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images North America/AFP)
A US flag is battered by the wind as the eye of Hurricane Hermine passes overhead in Shell Point Beach, Florida. (Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images North America/AFP)

Carrabelle – Hurricane Hermine made landfall in Florida's Big Bend area early on Friday as the first hurricane to hit the state in more than a decade.

The Category 1 storm hit just east of St Marks around 01:30 (EDT) with winds around 128km/h, according to the US National Hurricane Centre. Hermine later weakened to a tropical storm as it moved farther inland.

Projected storm surges of up to 4m menaced a wide swath of the coast and an expected drenching of up to 254mm of rain carried the danger of flooding along the storm's path over land, including the state capital Tallahassee, which hadn't been hit by a hurricane since Kate in 1985.

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