Idalia strengthening rapidly, forecast to make landfall Wednesday as a Major Category 3 Hurricane

Idalia strengthened into a Category 1 hurricane early Tuesday morning, and it is forecast to rapidly gain strength through the afternoon as it moves northeast towards the Big Bend of Florida.

By Wednesday morning, Idalia is forecast to make landfall as a Major Category 3 Hurricane between Cedar Key and Apalachicola, packing sustained winds as high as 120mph.

By Wednesday afternoon, Idalia will move over south Georgia, bringing potentially tropical storm force winds as far north Waycross, Statesboro, and Vidalia. A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for the Vidalia area through Thursday morning.

Track Idalia’s latest path and watches/warnings in effect via the interactive tracker below.

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Potential Impacts to Metro Atlanta

Hurricane Idalia’s core center will remain well to the south and east of Metro Atlanta, which is favorable for mitigating impacts to the North Georgia region.

However, wind gusts as high as 25-35 mph are possible, particularly south of I-20. The animation below illustrates the Futurecast winds for the state of Georgia.

In addition, rain showers and thunderstorms are to be expected, however the majority of the thunderstorm and tornado threat will remain south and east of Metro Atlanta, though it will be higher in Middle Georgia and near the Georgia Coast. The animation below illustrates the Futurecast radar imagery for the state of Georgia.

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