KC-135s and Airmen Depart MacDill Forward of Hurricane Idalia

MacDill Air Power Base, Fla., has evacuated its personnel and KC-135 plane as Hurricane Idalia approaches Florida’s Gulf coast. As of 4 p.m. Aug. 29, all base personnel have been evacuated and MacDill is closed and secured, an Air Power spokeswoman instructed Air & House Forces Journal.

In line with the Nationwide Hurricane Heart, Idalia is forecasted to turn out to be a Class 3 hurricane with catastrophic winds and heavy rain earlier than making a landfall close to the Large Bend space of Florida’s west coast.

Situated within the Tampa Bay space, MacDill is residence to the headquarters for U.S. Central Command and U.S. Particular Operations Command, which had been included within the evacuation order. There are greater than two dozen different navy items on the base, together with its host unit, the sixth Air Refueling Wing.

The Air Power spokeswoman stated the sixth Air Refueling Wing’s KC-135s tankers have been relocated to March Air Reserve Base,Calif.; Bangor Air Nationwide Guard Base, Maine; Tinker Air Base, Okla.; and McConnell Air Power Base, Kan.

As of the afternoon of Aug. 29, MacDill is at Hurricane Situation (HURCON) Stage 2, which signifies floor winds in extra of 58 miles per hour might arrive inside 24 hours.

There are different Air Power bases that may very well be in Idalia’s path. Eglin Air Power Base, Tyndall Air Power Base, and Hurlburt Subject, all positioned within the Western Florida Panhandle, are monitoring the storm however haven’t issued any evacuation orders. Air Power Particular Operations Command, headquartered at Hurlburt, is monitoring its path and should transfer plane if needed, the spokeswoman stated.

Elsewhere, Moody Air Power Base, Ga., and Joint Base Charleston, S.C., are each at HURCON 3, anticipating excessive winds and rain inside 48 hours.

Extra instantly, the Gulf coast of Florida is anticipated to bear the brunt of Idalia, which rapidly grew to hurricane energy Aug. 29. Hurricane warnings have been issued alongside a whole lot of miles of Florida shoreline. At a briefing, Gov. Ron DeSantis stated freeway tolls are being waived and accommodations are ready to take evacuees. He additionally added that lots of these dwelling within the storm’s path will lose electrical energy for an prolonged interval.

In September 2022, MacDill evacuated personnel and plane forward of Class 4 Hurricane Ian. Ian prevented a direct hit on the bottom, however storms can have devastating impacts on installations. In 2018, Hurricane Michael nearly fully destroyed Tyndall, and extra lately, a violent thunderstorm in Oklahoma final month broken no less than a dozen. T-6 coach plane.