The Saudi consulate in Texas called on the Kingdom’s citizens to exercise caution ahead of tropical storm Idalia.
Expected to strengthen into a major hurricane as it nears Florida’s Gulf coast and make landfall on Wednesday, local officials have evacuated many people and urged residents to make preparations for the natural phenomena.
The consulate urged Saudi citizens to follow official updates and adhere to special instructions on dealing with the storm and adverse weather conditions.
It provided contact numbers to call in case of emergency: 281-889-0570, 281-917-8658, and 281-917-8305.
Idalia is expected to attain major-hurricane status – with sustained winds topping at least 111 miles per hour (179 kph) – on Wednesday morning before slamming ashore later in the day, according to the Miami-based National Hurricane Center (NHC).
The NHC projected Idalia’s center would likely cross Florida’s coastline somewhere in the Big Bend region, where the state’s northern panhandle curves around into the Gulf side of the Florida Peninsula.
The intensifying storm was on an uncertain path as it spun northward over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
It put most of Florida’s 21 million residents, along with those in the southern parts of Georgia and South Carolina, under hurricane, tropical storm and storm surge warnings and advisories.
Authorities said Idalia’s chief threat to human life stemmed from surging walls of seawater that would be driven inland by high winds, inundating low-lying coastal areas.
Storm surge warnings were posted for hundreds of miles of shoreline, from Sarasota in the north through Tampa and stretching to the sport fishing haven of Indian Pass at the western end of Apalachicola Bay.