Governor’s Office Release
Today, Governor Rick Scott issued Executive Order 17-204 declaring a state of emergency in 31 counties within the State of Florida in response to Tropical Storm Emily. A state of emergency gives the state the flexibility to work with local governments to ensure they have all the resources they may need. Tropical storm warnings are currently in effect for Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and Lee Counties. At this time, there are no evacuation orders in effect. The Florida National Guard stands ready to assist with any storm related impacts.
Governor Scott said, “Earlier this morning, Tropical Depression Six was upgraded to Tropical Storm Emily and tropical storm warnings are currently in effect along Florida’s west coast. Upon learning of this tropical system from the National Hurricane Center, the State of Florida immediately engaged to prepare for any potential storm impacts. I have declared a state of emergency across 31 counties to ensure that every community has the resources they need and that state, regional and local agencies can easily work together to keep people prepared during Tropical Storm Emily.
“While this storm developed quickly overnight and will swiftly move across our state, storms can always develop rapidly and that is why is it so important to be prepared at the start of hurricane season. For helpful preparation resources, please visit FLGetAPlan.com. We will keep monitoring and issuing updates on Tropical Storm Emily as it moves across Florida today.”
In anticipation of inclement weather associated with Tropical Storm Emily, Hillsborough County is making sandbag materials available to the public at all three County Public Works Service Units.
Sandbags will be available at these units until 7 p.m. today.
• West Service Unit – 9805 Sheldon Road in Tampa
• South Service Unit – 8718 Old Big Bend Road in Gibsonton
• East Service Unit – 4702 Sydney Road in Plant City
Materials will be available for Hillsborough County residents to make their own sandbags. Each resident must provide their home address and sign their name acknowledging the receipt of 25 sandbags or less.
Use Caution in Heavy Rains
Motorists are urged to exercise caution on roadways as weather conditions warrant. Residents should keep in mind these floodwater safety tips:
• Don’t drive through moving or standing water. Water that is 2 feet deep can disable most vehicles.
• Treat non-functioning traffic signals as a four-way stop.
• Observe all barricades and detours. They are there for your protection.
• Avoid standing water. Floodwaters may contain fecal matter, bacteria, and viruses.
• Clear yard of debris or items that can block water flow and storm drains.
• Avoid downed power lines. Always assume power lines are live.
• Watch for workers repairing surfaces, and follow all directional instructions and detour signs.
• Residents can go online to HCFLGov.net/AtYourService, or call (813) 635-5400 to report flooding and road problems or to request additional information.
Go to HCFLGov.net/StaySafe for additional safety tips.