Floridians were preparing Thursday for the threat of a hurricane hitting the state’s Gulf Coast that may create a storm surge of 9 feet. If the tropical storm—dubbed Hermine—hits as a Category 1 hurricane, it will be the first in the state to do so in 11 years. “Residents in Florida need to pay attention to the latest that Hermine is doing,” The Weather Channel’s Kevin Roth said. “They should be preparing now because evacuations could begin this morning—they don’t want to be preparing in the dark.” Tropical winds may top 40 miles per hour Thursday afternoon, but the storm itself isn’t expected to make landfall until late Thursday or early Friday. Tampa-area schools, offices, and businesses were closed as early as Wednesday in preparation for the storm.