Home News Hurricane Idalia: A Timeline of the Storm’s Path and Impact

Hurricane Idalia: A Timeline of the Storm’s Path and Impact

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Hurricane Idalia was one of the most powerful and destructive storms to hit the U.S. in 2023. It made landfall in Florida as a Category 3 hurricane, bringing catastrophic storm surge, damaging winds, and flooding rains. It then continued to move along the southeast coast, affecting Georgia and the Carolinas, before reaching the Atlantic Ocean. Here is a timeline of the storm’s path and impact, based on the information from various sources.

Hurricane Idalia: A Timeline of the Storm’s Path and Impact
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August 24-27: Formation and intensification

  • A weather trough of low pressure that eventually became Idalia formed on August 24 in the Eastern Pacific basin off the Central American coast and crossed into the Atlantic basin on August25.
  • Moving through the western Caribbean Sea, it became Tropical Storm Idalia on August27.
  • Idalia rapidly intensified into a Category 1 hurricane on August 28, as it approached the westernmost part of Cuba.

August 29-30: Landfall in Florida

  • Idalia strengthened into a Category 4 hurricane over the Gulf of Mexico on August 29, reaching its peak intensity of 150 mph.
  • It weakened slightly to a Category 3 hurricane before making landfall at Keaton Beach in the Big Bend region of Florida on August 30, with maximum sustained winds of 125 mph.
  • It brought life-threatening storm surge up to 16 feet, especially in Cedar Key, a small collection of islands off Florida’s coast.
  • It also caused widespread power outages, infrastructure damage, and flooding in many parts of Florida, including Tallahassee, Gainesville, and Jacksonville.

August 31-September 1: Impact on Georgia and the Carolinas

  • Idalia continued to move northward as a tropical storm, bringing heavy rain and gusty winds to southeastern Georgia and South Carolina on August 31.
  • It then curved eastward along the coast of North Carolina, where it caused some storm surge and coastal flooding on September 1.
  • It finally reached the Atlantic Ocean later that day, where it weakened into a post-tropical cyclone.

September 2: Dissipation

  • Idalia dissipated over the Atlantic Ocean on September 2, after moving away from the U.S. coast.
  • It left behind a trail of devastation, with at least 25 deaths and billions of dollars in damage reported across Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas.