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Florida Prepares For Hurricane Ian

A hurricane warning has been issued for south Florida as category three Hurricane Ian moves north from Cuba. Ian marks the first major hurricane to hit the state this season, and as it moves northwards, it’s gaining strength. The storm prompts civilians to evacuate and preemptively shut down airports before the storm hits land. In preparation for the worst, Governor Ron DeSantis has advised citizens to take caution and heed the evacuation orders in the areas that are most affected. Additionally, support has already flooded into the state from across the country to prepare for a speedy recovery.

CNN: Florida governor warns of catastrophic flooding and life-threatening storm surge

Pamela Kirkland; September 27, 2022

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis encouraged residents to prepare for historic flooding and storm surge on Tuesday, encouraging Floridians under evacuation orders to heed those warnings.

“It is now a major hurricane,” DeSantis said. “Understand the impacts are going to be far, far broader than just where the eye of the storm happens to make landfall. In some areas, there will be catastrophic flooding and life-threatening storm surge.”

DeSantis said the most recent forecast had landfall south of Tampa Bay, in the Sarasota area, threatening severe flooding and an estimated 5 to 10 feet of storm surge. 

Florida Director of Emergency Management Kevin Guthrie, said the National Hurricane Center is predicting the landfall to be Venice, Florida in 35 hours at 125 miles per hour “making that a major Category 3 landfalling hurricane.”

Guthrie continued that residents of Pinellas, Hillsborough and Manatee counties should continue to heed warnings and not return to their homes.

About 2.5 million Floridians are currently under some kind of evacuation order, according to Florida officials. 

“Mother nature is a very fearsome adversary. So please heed those warnings. You do not need to evacuate to another state. You don’t need to go hundreds of miles away. There are shelters that are open and all of these counties at this point,” said DeSantis

According to the governor, Florida has activated 5,000 National Guard members with an additional 2,000 members from other states. More than 28,000 people are staged for power restorations across the state of Florida. 

Twenty-six school districts announced closures as of Tuesday morning. DeSantis said he expected more closures to be announced as the track of the storm becomes clearer. 

Photo: Florida Governor’s Office

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