10 things you need to know today: August 31, 2023

Hurricane Idalia crashes through Florida and Georgia, a judge finds Giuliani legally liable for defaming election workers, and more

Gas station in Perry, Florida, after Hurricane Idalia
(Image credit: Sean Rayford / Getty Images)

1. Hurricane Idalia tears across Florida, Georgia, South Carolina

Hurricane Idalia ripped through Florida and Georgia on Wednesday after making landfall along Florida's Big Bend with 125 mile-per-hour winds. The storm flooded seaside neighborhoods on Florida's northern Gulf Coast, knocked down trees and power lines, and tore roofs off houses as it pushed inland. Two people were killed in weather-related crashes in Florida. Another person died in Georgia. Idalia weakened to a tropical storm as it continued up South Carolina's coast. Early Thursday, Idalia was 45 miles south-southwest of Wilmington, North Carolina, with top sustained winds of 60 mph. The storm, combined with a supermoon, caused record high tides and flooded the South Carolina coast, sending water over the seawall protecting the streets of Charleston's historic downtown.

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Harold Maass, The Week US

Harold Maass is a contributing editor at The Week. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 debut of the U.S. print edition and served as editor of TheWeek.com when it launched in 2008. Harold started his career as a newspaper reporter in South Florida and Haiti. He has previously worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami Herald, ABC News and Fox News, and for several years wrote a daily roundup of financial news for The Week and Yahoo Finance.