High winds and surging waves pummeled Alaska’s western coast Wednesday, churning the Bering Sea and forcing residents of Nome and isolated native villages to seek higher ground inland.

“We do have some reports of buildings losing roofs in the Nome area,” said meteorologist Scott Berg at the National Weather Service in Fairbanks. “Also water at the base of buildings in Nome.”

Nome Communications officer Zane Brown says the height of snow and hurricane-force winds hit at about 2 a.m. He says the city continues to prepare for a possible Bering Sea surge at high tide later in the morning, but so far damage is minimal.