Forecasters say Hurricane Hermine has made landfall over northwest Florida just east of St. Marks.

It's the first hurricane to directly strike the Sunshine State in more than a decade, roaring in from the northwest Gulf Coast with 80-mph winds and heavy rains.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Hermine made landfall early Friday around 1:30 a.m. EDT.

Projected storm surges of up to 12 feet menaced the coastline and expected rainfall up to 10 inches carried the danger of flooding through the storm's path, including the state capital, Tallahassee, which hadn't been hit by a hurricane since Kate in 1985.

Hermine is expected to drop back down to a tropical storm before pushing into Georgia, the Carolinas and up the East Coast with the potential for drenching rain and deadly flooding.