With Hurricane Idalia expected to rapidly intensify into a major hurricane, the US takes measures for its ports due to sustained tropical storm force winds generated by the Hurricane.

The US coast guard warns the hurricane Idalia is expected to arrive within the next hours and reminds the public when hurricane or tropical storm force winds are present to stay off the water and clear the beaches.

The public should monitor the progress and strength of the storm through local television, radio and internet. Boaters can monitor its progress on VHF radio channel 16.

Port Tampa Bay has closed all waterways, but the port’s landside operations remain open to ensure gas and other fuels can be moved out of the port as long as remains safe to do so.  

“Port staff will continue to work round-the-clock so we can re-open to full operations as soon as safely possible to support the community and region we serve,” the port announces.

The US coast guard has currently set the port´s condition to Yankee. “Port Condition Yankee means Gale force winds are possible within 24 hours,” the port adds.

The U.S. Coast Guard has set port condition Yankee for the port of Wilmington and anticipates setting the same port condition for Morehead City, North Carolina.

“Port Condition Yankee closes the identified ports to inbound maritime traffic greater than 500 gross tons without permission from the captain of the port. All vessels greater than 500 gross tons, without permission to remain in port, should have departed or be prepared to depart prior to the setting of Port Condition Zulu.”

In accordance with the latest information given, the US coast guard has now set port condition Zulu, as it is called, for the Port of Wilmington at noon Wednesday due to predicted sustained tropical storm force winds generated by Hurricane Idalia that may arrive within the next 12 hours. 

In port condition Zulu, the port is closed, and all port operations are suspended.