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Experts warn tonight's Super Blue Moon could have disastrous consequences as it makes Hurricane Idalia worse
Featured Image Credit: Colin Wooderson / 500px / Twitter/@sherrifpinellas

Experts warn tonight's Super Blue Moon could have disastrous consequences as it makes Hurricane Idalia worse

The Super Blue Moon comes just as Florida residents are facing evacuation warnings

Though tonight's Super Blue Moon is one to keep an eye out for, weather experts have explained how it could make things worse for people in the path of Hurricane Idalia.

The Category 3 hurricane made landfall in Florida today (30 August), and in doing so became the strongest storm to make landfall in the Big Bend region in more than 125 years.

Governor Ron DeSantis has warned Floridians to take notice of evacuation warnings as more than 115,000 people have already been left without power, but there's the possibility circumstances could be made worse due to the impacts of the rare supermoon lighting up the sky this week.

The Super Blue Moon, also known as the Perigee Blue Moon, comes as the moon reaches its closest point in its orbit relative to Earth, making it the biggest full moon of 2023.

However, you'll probably know that the moon controls the tides down here on Earth, and as the moon gets closer to our planet, oceans will experience a stronger pull from its gravity.

As a result, the tides along Florida's Gulf Coast will swell to their highest point of the entire year; an occurrence known as the Perigean Spring Tides or the 'King Tides'.

The Super Blue Moon is the last one until 2037.
Colin Wooderson / 500px

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted that the greatest storm surge from Idalia will be up to 30cm (1 ft) higher than normal due to the Perigee Moon.

With that in mind, NOAA forecast a 15 percent chance of high tide flooding in the area today, and a 20 percent chance tomorrow, due to the effects of the Moon's gravity.

Yesterday (29 August), the National Hurricane Centre suggested the amount of water flooding on to land could be up to 15 feet (4.6 metres) along parts of Florida's west coast, while the Tampa Bay area further south could see up to seven feet (2.1 metres) of storm surge.

Coastal areas in Florida are experiencing flooding.
ABC Action News

The exact impacts will depend on the track of Idalia and to what extent the storm surge peak coincides with high tide, but Brian Haines, the meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service office in Charleston, South Carolina, has expressed belief the timing is 'pretty bad', the MailOnline reports.

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor has already warned residents today that more flooding is expected in the area throughout the day, telling CNN: "We have flooding, extensive flooding along our coast right now. We have 126 miles of waterfront land here in Tampa, and that is only going to rise. We are at low tide. The tide is coming in.

"We expect that king high tide around noon to 1 (p.m. ET) and that's going to bring in several additional feet of water. The flooding that we are experiencing now is nothing compared to what we are going to see in a few hours."

Tonight's Super Blue Moon will be the last Earth's residents will get to see until 2037.

Topics: US News, Weather, Space