‘We got off really easy today:’ Tybee Island sees minimal damage from Idalia

Published: Aug. 30, 2023 at 10:38 PM EDT
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TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (WTOC) - Heavy winds on Tybee Island as Idalia came through Georgia’s coast.

Some coming to see the crashing waves for themselves.

“I like to see what a hurricane does at the beach. It’s interesting.”

And some bars like Windrose still had their doors open, according to owner Jessica Hadley.

“They always like to have somewhere to have their hurricane parties.”

The wind knocked some power lines down, like one on 2nd Ave. Limbs and debris can be seen on the streets.

But there wasn’t as much rain as what might have been, meaning little flooding. That’s something Deb Barreiro is grateful for.

“We got off really easy today.”

She’s been living here for nearly 30 years and has seen many storms.

“We were really lucky today. The wind was scary and the gust were frightening but the damage seems to be minimal.”

And fellow islander Ashley Stille may have a mailbox to get situated but she shares the same relief.

“I said none of the neighbors had any big damage and we didn’t either. So a mailbox, if that’s all it is, I’m happy with.

While Tybee Island Mayor Shirley Sessions says she is also grateful, she acknowledges the fact that the beach endured some powerful winds. Erosion being her main concern.

“A lot of wind, a lot of flooding and that’s what really causes damage.”

She’s says city staff will be teaming up with the Department of Natural Resources to take a look at how much sand was lost and go from there.

“If it was significant, we will be able to get some funding to help with those repairs. But all in all, we’re very fortunate. My hearts and prayers go out to our neighbors in Florida and inland, who were not as fortunate,” said Mayor Sessions.

Mayor Sessions says she’ll keep us updated on what they find in the coming days. She applauded city leaders and residents for being well prepared.

She wants folks living out here to keep that preparation in mind because hurricane season is not over. That means having insurance policies because it’s better safe than sorry.