TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — As WFLA News 8 crews continue to track the devastation and aftermath along Florida’s Gulf Coast from Hurricane Idalia, the best videos and stories from the area can be found below.
Idalia made landfall early Wednesday morning, and although the hurricane has passed the Tampa Bay area, the main concern for residents is the storm surge in the area.
Gov. Ron DeSantis said as of 6 p.m. Wednesday, there was one unconfirmed fatality in a traffic-related incident.
Officials said 75% of the affected area has been searched, and all of the state’s bridges have been inspected.
Storm surge effects from Hurricane Idalia are still present in Tampa’s Westshore District, according to Tampa Fire Rescue. The agency shared photos of some destruction, including a photo of Whiskey Joe’s Bar & Grill that appears to be submerged in water.
TFR is still urging residents to stay clear of roadways and continue to follow advisories as crews work to assess damages and flooding.
The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is preparing to shut down 41 from Big Bend to Symmes due to flooding from Idalia.
The Tampa Riverwalk also saw flooding from Idalia, with water coming up over the railing and spilling onto the streets and sidewalks.
Bullfrog Creek and the Gibsonton area are experiencing “heavy flooding that is anticipated to continue as we near high tide, according to HCSO. Avoid any areas with standing water.
Excessive flooding has affected Highway 41 in the Riverview area, according to HCSO. Residents are advised to avoid the area.
Bayshore Blvd. in downtown Tampa is also experiencing flooding due to storm surge. This view is from Monte Carlo Towers.
Tampa International Airport announced they’re reopening at 4 p.m. on Wednesday for arriving flights only. Departing flights and normal operations will resume early Thursday morning.
TPA said the airport sustained “minimal damage” from Hurricane Idalia.
Hernando County Fire Rescue rescued two people who were trapped in their car Wednesday morning. Authorities used an airboat to reached the individuals.
The Board of Commissioners imposed a mandatory curfew prohibiting travel within evacuation Zone A. The curfew will go into effect starting at 10 p.m. Wednesday and last until 6 a.m.
Manatee County Sheriff Charles R. Wells shared a glimpse of the flooding in Rubonia Wednesday morning. The sheriff urges residents to not walk or drive through standing water.
Sheriff Wells also shared photos from Anna Maria Island showing flooding on the island. He says they anticipate the water to rise as high tide approaches.
The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office helped evacuate over 60 citizens from flooded homes within the Hudson area.
Many of Pinellas County’s facilities will reopen Thursday, but residents should call to confirm any questions about service that’s not listed below:
- County parks will be closed to start the day, but will reopen as they’re cleaned up. Parks administrative offices will be open.
- Solid Waste will resume normal operations at 6 a.m.
- Human Services offices will be open.
- Contractor Licensing Department will be open.
- Utilities (except for walk-in payment center) will be open.
- Animal Services will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport terminal building will reopen its doors Wednesday at 3 p.m. Flights on Wednesday were previously canceled in preparation for the storm.
The airport said it plans to resume normal flight activity on Thursday.
The Howard Frankland Bridge, Sunshine Skyway Bridge, and the Courtney Campbell Causeway have all reopened.
Tarpon Springs near the Sponge Docks is seeing flooding, causing roads to be blocked off.
The Clearwater Police Department shared a view of Seminole Docks this morning amid Idalia.
The evacuation order for Pinellas County has been lifted, and access to the barrier islands also reopened.
O’Maddy’s Bar & Grille in Gulfport was briefly open amid continuous flooding from Hurricane Idalia Wednesday. People were seen surrounding the restaurant as water was rising behind them. (Video courtesy: Bex Aukai Bell)
Video shows three sailboats off their moorings in Gulf Port as Tampa Bay areas continue to see rising floodwaters from Hurricane Idalia.
Hurricane Idalia’s strong force pushed a boat so far into Bayfront Park in Sarasota that the boat appeared to be “sitting” on a park bench.
Photographer Myra Coxey shared heartbreaking photos of the damage Hurricane Idalia left behind in Englewood, Florida. The roads were crumpled and buckled, making it impossible for drivers to use the roadways.
“Our town is lucky to receive minimal damage. However, I know for myself and many others, a ride down Beach Road is the best place to clear your head,” she wrote on social media.