Hurricane Idalia makes landfall on Florida’s west coast as a dangerous Category 3 storm on Wednesday and threatens to unleash life-threatening storm surges and rainfall.
Idalia comes ashore in the lightly populated Big Bend region, where the Florida Panhandle curves into the peninsula. The result could be a big blow to a state still dealing with lingering damage from last year’s Hurricane Ian.
The National Weather Service in Tallahassee calls Idalia “an unprecedented event” since no major hurricanes on record have ever passed through the bay abutting the Big Bend.
Hurricanes are measured on a five-category scale, with a Category 5 being the strongest. A Category 3 storm is the first on the scale considered a major hurricane.