What Time Will Idalia Hit Florida

Tomorrow between 6 and 9 a.m. ET, Idalia is expected to hit the coast south of Perry, Florida. Forecasters say that a storm surge of 10 to 15 feet will break all records in the Big Bend part of the state.

What Time Will Idalia Hit Florida

Tropical Storm Idalia formed over the western Caribbean Sea and is forecast to strengthen as it approaches the Gulf Coast of Florida in the coming days. Here is the latest on when and where impacts could be felt.

Idalia’s Current Status

As of August 30th, Idalia was centered about 175 miles south of Cozumel, Mexico with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph. The storm is moving northwest at 8 mph.

Tropical storm force winds extend up to 80 miles from the center, meaning gusty winds are already affecting portions of Central America and the Yucatan Peninsula. Idalia is expected to become a hurricane within 36 hours as it moves over very warm waters of the Caribbean.

Projected Path Toward Florida

Idalia is forecast to continue moving northwestward across the western Caribbean over the next 2 to 3 days. It will likely approach the southeastern Gulf of Mexico by Friday morning.

Once in the Gulf, models suggest Idalia will turn more northward on a path toward the west coast of Florida. The current National Hurricane Center forecast has the center approaching the Tampa Bay area late Saturday.

However, there remains uncertainty in the exact track and intensity Idalia will take as it nears Florida. Slight changes could bring the core of the storm farther south or north. Residents statewide should closely monitor updates.

Potential Impacts for Florida

If Idalia’s center tracks near or over Tampa Bay, the region could see a dangerous storm surge of 5 to 8 feet, capable of major coastal flooding. The storm would also bring flooding rains and hurricane force winds to the bay area and points south.

Even if the center stays offshore, strong winds, heavy rain, and 2-4 foot storm surge would still extend well inland across the peninsula. The risk is greatest near and south of the storm’s path, but even north Florida could see tropical storm conditions.

Timeline for Arrival

The latest timing suggests tropical storm-force winds could begin reaching the Keys and South Florida as early as Friday night. Gusty winds would then spread northward across the peninsula on Saturday.

Peak conditions would likely last from Saturday evening through Sunday morning along Florida’s Gulf Coast. Residents should prepare NOW and be ready to hunker down by Friday night or Saturday morning.

With Idalia forecast to strengthen into a hurricane, Floridians should take the risk seriously. Stay updated on the storm’s evolving path in the coming days. Caution and preparedness will be essential to staying safe.

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