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Tropical Storm Idalia is preparing to hit with hurricane force

Florida is bracing for the arrival of Tropical Storm Idalia, which is expected to become a Category 2 hurricane by Wednesday, according to Gov. Ron DeSantis. Current wind speeds are around 60 mph, but forecasts predict they could increase to between 96 and 110 mph by the time the storm makes landfall.

The predicted point of impact is the Big Bend area of ​​northern Florida, a transition region from the panhandle to the peninsula. As of Sunday, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) pinpointed Idalia’s position near the Yucatan Channel, about 145 miles south of the western tip of Cuba.

Areas of concern include possible flash flooding on the west coast of Florida, the Panhandle and parts of southern Georgia. The NHC stressed that “by the time it reaches the Florida Gulf Coast, Idalia could have the ferocity of a major hurricane.” In response to the imminent threat, Governor DeSantis has declared a state of emergency in 33 counties.

Addressing the state during a Sunday briefing, DeSantis urged residents to anticipate and prepare for power outages. In anticipation of Idalia, power companies are on high alert and the National Guard has prepared 1,100 members, 2,400 high water vehicles and several aircraft for possible rescue and relief tasks. Specifically, Duke Energy has also been on the lookout, preparing its crews and equipment for any power outage emergencies.

President Joe Biden has received updates on Idalia’s projected trajectory and will continue to be briefed as the situation evolves, according to a White House statement Sunday.

This article is sourced from and written by AI.

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