Three people have reportedly died since Hurricane Idalia made landfall on Wednesday morning, the first to hit the United States this season.
The eye of Tropical Storm Idalia pushed through North Carolina on Thursday morning, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. When it made landfall early on Wednesday, then-Hurricane Idalia brought winds of 125 mph to Florida’s Gulf Coast. As it moved through the state’s Big Bend region, the Category 3 storm ripped through homes and businesses. Storm surge on Florida’s coastline reached record highs of more than 8 feet in Cedar Key and over 4.5 feet in Tampa Bay.
Read Yahoo News’ Idalia live blog for full coverage of the storm.
So far, three people have reportedly died in three incidents related to Idalia. Two men died in separate car crashes in Florida, and a third man is reported to have died in Georgia after a tree fell on him when he was clearing debris from a road.
At its peak, more than 300,000 homes were left without power in four states: Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Electricity began to be slowly restored through Wednesday night, with more homes gaining power into Thursday afternoon. President Biden approved emergency assistance for South Carolina after it was hit with tornadoes as well as “life-threatening winds.”
Cleanup and rescue efforts have already begun in all four states. Florida Gov. Ron DeSanits said there had been 40 successful rescues made since Wednesday night after Idalia left "significant damage" across the state. Speaking at a news conference in Tallahassee, DeSantis said that 29 of the 40 rescues had been made by the National Guard. He added that “efforts are continuing.”
As Idalia heads east to the Atlantic Ocean, all eyes are on Hurricane Franklin and Tropical Storm Jose, which formed hundreds of miles east of Bermuda. Meteorologists said the storm will make its way toward Bermuda in the coming days before being absorbed by Hurricane Franklin.