Idalia Has Left Cuba As A Hurricane And Is Heading Towards Florida
Hurricane Idalia is gaining strength and is heading towards Florida. The forecast cone hasn’t changed much, still heading toward the Florida Big Bend Area. A little more west and further away from Southwest Florida. One thing that has changed overnight, is the speed of which Idalia will get there.
The 8/29 5am advisory now has Hurricane Idalia with maximum sustained winds at 75 mph and a northern direction at 14 mph. That increase in speed as it heads north comes into play as the timing of Idalia’s Florida impact is now looking to be around Wednesday morning. The water in the gulf is as warm as I can ever remember, the longer the storm is over water, the more of that energy it can pick up. It’s currently expected to hit landfall at a Category 3.
So what’s in store for Southwest Florida from Hurricane Idalia?
Tropical Storm Warnings for Desoto, Charlotte, Lee, and Collier counties. As of this update it looks like the hurricane force winds will stay offshore of us. But obviously that can change. And don’t sleep on tropical storm force winds. Because the rains can come quickly and with intensity we’ll need to watch for flooding. I had a tropical storm take down a tree in my backyard once. The ground was so saturated that the winds just blew it over.
Don’t drive during the rain bands. NBC2 is calling for 2 to 4 inches of rain. Stay tuned to local and national news to make your weather related decisions. They’ll be able to tell you exactly when rain will occur, and updates on how much.
Here’s a look at the current forecast cone, then there’s one really weird possible scenario to discuss.
There’s a chance that Idalia could loop back around and hit Florida a second time. Waaaay too early to tell on that one, but a couple of models are seeing it.