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Hurricane Idalia leaves at least three dead, causes up to $20 billion in estimated damage

Two men in Florida died in separate weather-related accidents and one man in Georgia died when a tree fell on him, law enforcement said.

Published: August 31, 2023 9:29am

Updated: August 31, 2023 10:58am

Hurricane Idalia's path of destruction through four different states has left at least three people dead and caused up to $20 billion in estimated damage.

The storm, which first hit Florida's northern Gulf coast Wednesday as a Category 3 hurricane, traveled through Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina before entering over the Atlantic Ocean on Thursday.

Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Steve Gaskins said two men died in weather-related accidents Wednesday morning as Idalia raged, according to CNN

Georgia's Lowndes County Sheriff Ashley Paulk said her county had one storm-related death Wednesday afternoon. A man had been cutting a tree on a highway when another tree fell on him, resulting in his death, Paulk said. 

It is unclear whether the death toll has increased as of Thursday morning.

A preliminary estimate from AccuWeather of Idalia's total damage and economic loss in the southeast U.S. ranges between $18 billion to $20 billion.

Putting Idalia's estimated cost into context, Hurricane Ian last year caused up to $210 billion in damage, according to the weather outlet.

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