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Action News looks at impact of direct hurricane strike

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Updated: 5/10/2013 7:11 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla -- Super storm Sandy reminded everyone of the potential destruction a powerful storm can produce.

The storm made landfall in New Jersey and New York last October, after dropping from a hurricane to a sub-tropical system.  Yet Sandy still caused billions of dollars in damage.

Some of the effects of Sandy can still be seen along the Atlantic Coast.

Action News wanted to know the impact even a smaller hurricane could have on our area.

The last direct hit for our area from a hurricane happened in 1964, when Dora roared ashore.

The Category 2 storm made landfall near Ponte Vedra.  It toppled homes and businesses, covered highways in water and left most of Duval County without power.

Former National Weather Service meteorologist Steve Letro says damage would be more significant today.

"The difference between what we saw them and what we see now is there's way more stuff now," Steve Letro says.

In some places water would be more than 6 feet deep.
In Atlantic Beach, about halfway up the first floor of City Hall.
Most of Jacksonville Beach's businesses near and east of 3rd Street would be inundated. The storm surge would bring water as far inland as beyond the Intracoastal Waterway to places like Queens Harbor.
Even downtown would suffer major flooding, thanks to surge from the St. Johns River.

"You would see water over a good portion of the beaches area along the intracoastal," Steve Letro says.

Damage would be in the billions of dollars, even for just a Category 2.

Hurricane season starts June 1.
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