Hurricane Idalia Tips from Emergency Management
Hernando County Government’s Office of Emergency Management continues to monitor and inform our community about Tropical Storm Idalia or Hurricane Idalia. We will continue to keep you updated before, during, and after the storm.
- Voluntary Evacuations have been issued for all areas west of US 19, which includes evacuation zones A, B, and C. All residents living in coastal and low-lying areas, as well as manufactured homes county-wide, are included.
- Report damages to the Emergency Operations Center at (352) 754-4083
- Tropical Storm Idalia is forecast to become a CAT 3 Hurricane with 115 mph sustained winds. Expect landfall late Tuesday Night or Wednesday between the Big Bend Area of Florida and Tampa Bay. Flash flood risk is moderate at 75%.
- Potential Surge Tuesday or Wednesday with the storm moving northeast at 15mph is 6-9 feet Above Ground Level (AGL) anywhere along with west coast and Panhandle of Florida – Highly dependent on landfall location.
- Expect heavy rain and areas of saltwater flooding along the coast on Tuesday and Wednesday, especially at times of high tide. The impact will be isolated inland south of Interstate 4. Expect rain of 6-10” with isolated higher amounts.
- Power outages are possible. All residents should remain indoors.
- First responders will NOT be responding to emergencies during sustained winds that exceed 40-45 MPH, or conditions deemed dangerous. Once the winds subside, personnel will be out as soon as possible to assist.
- Use the telephone to communicate emergency information to us unless telephone services are unavailable. Call and/or text 9-1-1
- Residents in non-evacuation zones should make final preparations now to stay safe through tropical storm or hurricane-force winds. Anyone who does not feel safe in their home is advised to consider staying with a friend or family member in a non-evacuation zone or at a public shelter.
- All County Offices will reopen Thursday, August 31, 2023.
Emergency Tips for Hurricane Idalia
Before Hurricane Idalia Hits Your Area
- Charge your phone; remember, texts work when cell service doesn’t.
- Decide on one point of contact (out of town preferably) to communicate with to save on power; tell people to get updates from that person. Make sure your friends and family understand you will likely lose connection.
- Fill your bathtub and empty containers with water.
- Stay calm – keep kids and pets calm; talk to your children about what will happen – be clear and honest, but not scary – warn them that electronics may not work
- Take a look around your neighborhood. Consider inviting those who are alone and who are elderly into your home to decrease the anxiety.
During the storm
- Close interior doors. Secure and brace external doors.
- If power goes out, use a weather radio for alerts. For light, use flashlights, battery-operated lanterns, or chemical light sticks.
- Stay indoors and stay calm. Do not be fooled if there is a lull; it could be the eye of the storm and winds may pick up again.
- Make sure to have extra batteries for weather radios and keep devices charged.
- Hurricane Ian is expected to cause substantial storm surge as the storm moves to the north, which may occur after the hurricane-force winds have subsided. Do not assume that the danger has passed.
- Stay in your home until officials say that it is safe to go out.
If your home is breached by Hurricane Debris or Tornados
- Take refuge in your safe room, an interior room, closet, or hallway on the lowest level of your home. Remember, the center of your house is the safest.
- Lie on the floor under a table or other sturdy object if you cannot make it to a safe room.
- Consider leaving your home only if remaining there poses an imminent threat to your life.
- Wait until the storm has passed to tend to any damage.
After the storm
- It could take days for all the roads in Hernando County to be cleared. During this time, stay in your home. Wait for updates from officials.
- If you must be on the road, do not drive through standing water.
- The conditions that you faced during the storm will likely continue while crews work to restore power, water and sewer service. Continue to use safety measures, such as boiling water, until officials announce that it is safe. Make use of your hurricane survival kit to meet your everyday needs.
- Do not drive or walk near downed powerlines.
- If emergency water and supplies are needed, an announcement will be made as information becomes available.
Stay tuned for weather updates through weather alert radios, local media outlets, the county website (www.hernandocounty.us/EM), and county social media accounts.
Visit the following web and social media sites for more information:
· For the latest local conditions and a complete list of news alerts go to www.HernandoCounty.us/EM
· Sign up to receive weather alerts at www.AlertHernando.org
· Follow us on Facebook @HernandoCoGov & @HernandoCountyFire
· Follow us on Twitter @HernandoCoGov
Hernando County Government offices are closed Monday, August 28th through Wednesday, August 30th. Republic Services will not be providing curbside collection on Tuesday, August 29th through Wednesday, August 30th.
For questions or more information, please contact Hernando County’s Public Information Center which is open until 7 PM tonight, and 24/7 beginning tomorrow at 7 am by dialing (352) 754-4083.