Nicole forces 15 Daytona Beach Shores condo complexes to evacuate as storm threatens collapse

1 hotel also under threat of collapse, sheriff says

DAYTONA BEACH SHORES, Fla. – Daytona Beach Shores police and Volusia County deputies went door-to-door inside 12 condo complexes and one hotel along the beach on Wednesday that were under threat of collapse due to the powerful storm surge caused by Tropical Storm Nicole.

“Our chief building official had already deemed five of them unsafe, but after the last high tide cycle, he found that the mitigation that these properties had done to stop the damage from Ian had failed and six more properties are now being evacuated,” Chief Mike Fowler said.

Fowler added that there was a distinct possibility of structural collapse at these 11 buildings; however, Sheriff Mike Chitwood said the total number of buildings included 12 condo complexes and at least one hotel. Daytona Beach Shores officials said Thursday there were additional properties evacuated, bringing the total go 15.

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“We don’t want to be in these buildings,” Fowler said. “These buildings are not safe to be in. People did not heed the warning that the county put out for a mandatory evacuation of the entire beachside. So now we’ve got our people in there and we’re trying to get them moved out as soon as possible.”

According to city officials, the buildings evacuated included St. Kitts, Grand Coquina, Twin Towers North, Marbella, Pirates Cove and Sunglow Resort. They were evacuated at about 2 p.m., the city said. The buildings evacuated on Thursday include Castaways and Tower Grand, officials said.

Sheriff Mike Chitwood said there were additional buildings in danger of collapse in Wilbur-by-the-Sea.

Hurricane Nicole will continue to track westward toward the east coast of Florida during the day, with anticipated landfall near north Palm Beach County late Wednesday and into early Thursday morning.

Flagler, Volusia and Brevard counties are expected to see winds reaching 50 to 80 mph with 4 to 8 inches of rain.

A storm surge warning remains in effect for the entirety of east Central Florida coast, for the potential of 3-5 feet of surge above ground level and as much as 6 feet in spots.

Strong and gusty onshore winds through Wednesday night will produce very high seas and large breaking waves. These winds, high seas and surf will combine with high tides to bring the threat of significant beach erosion around the times of the high tide cycle.

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About the Authors:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.

Molly joined News 6 at the start of 2021, returning home to Central Florida.