PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB)–While Tropical Storm Marco may not be headed directly for Florida, we are still feeling the storm’s impacts in the panhandle. Everything from flooding to rough surf and even lightning strikes.
“Everything was underwater. We watched a vehicle get stuck and it had to get pulled out with a tow truck,” said Kelli Heath, a tourist.
Along Bay County’s coast, many roads were submerged underwater. Parts of Thomas Drive and Front Beach road were completely impassable.
“Fire trucks, police officers had everything blocked off. We had to go the back way,” said Heath.
Businesses like Ms. Newbys on Thomas Drive experienced floodwater up to their front door. Some cars could even be seen stalling out, unable to navigate the deep floods.
Lightning strikes could also be seen. One surfer at the County Pier captured video on his GoPro of a lightning strike hitting the Gulf just a few yards from where he was swimming.
“It was so bright it was like a big white flash, it like pushed me off my board. It was crazy,” said Esteban Villarreal.
Villarreal says he and his friends immediately got out of the water, unable to believe what they just experienced.
“It felt like something exploded inside of you and then we felt the heat from it while we were in the water. There were about 10 people out there and every single person in the water felt it,” said Villarreal.
The storm also created rough surf conditions and double red flags continue to fly. For all the up to date information on Tropical Storm Marco, download our Storm Track 13 mobile app.