A model shows the anticipated track of Tropical Storm Idalia. These models are not exact. [ NOAA ]

Idalia expected to make landfall as major hurricane along Florida’s Gulf Coast

Tropical Storm Idalia is expected to become a “dangerous major hurricane” before making landfall along Florida’s Gulf Coast Wednesday, according to the latest advisory from the National Hurricane Center. Storm surge and hurricane warnings have been issued for portions of Florida’s Gulf Coast in the Big Bend region, and some local impacts are possible along the Forgotten Coast. A hurricane watch and tropical storm warning have been extended to cover Franklin County and Indian Pass in Gulf County. Storm surges in the area are expected to range from two to four feet. Surges of up to six feet are possible. Models used to predict hurricane paths and intensities are not exact and may have up to 33 percent uncertainty. Residents in the areas are advised to closely monitor local weather forecasts and watch for updates and orders from local emergency authorities. A major hurricane is a Category 3, 4 or 5 storm or higher. A storm becomes a Category 3 hurricane when sustained wind speeds reach at least 111 mph. Hurricane conditions are possible within the hurricane watch area by late Tuesday or Wednesday, with tropical storm conditions possible by Tuesday. All storm preparations should be completed today, Aug. 28. Gov. Ron DeSantis has declared a state of emergency for 33 of Florida’s 67 counties ahead of Idalia, including Bay, Gulf and Franklin counties.

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