August 29, 11:15 AM —
The National Hurricane Center has released its latest advisory for Hurricane Idalia: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/#Idalia. Idalia is expected to make landfall early Wednesday morning as a Category 3 hurricane along Florida’s Big Bend coastal area. Idalia will bring life-threatening storm surge, high winds, heavy rains and flooding to the West Coast of Florida and areas inland. Warnings are in effect for most of the Big Bend, extending south to Tampa Bay; forty-six of Florida’s 67 counties are catagorized as under a State of Emergency.
I urge everyone to take all storm warnings, watches and evacuation orders in your area seriously and take all precautions necessary to protect yourself; your family, pets and livestock; your property and business.
Wherever you live in Florida, UF/IFAS Extension has resources that can help you make quick and informed decisions about what to do before, during and after the storm.
The Disaster Preparation and Recovery website (http://disaster.ifas.ufl.edu) is a comprehensive guide in English and Spanish that includes the UF/IFAS Extension Disaster Handbook as well as helpful tips, publications, videos and infographics, and contact information for your local UF/IFAS Extension office.
Due to safety considerations, some county Extension offices may be temporarily closed during the storm. Visit https://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/find-your-local-office/ to find contact information for the Extension office near you.
The Florida Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) (https://piecenter.com/resources/fl-eden/) is another great place to go for information. Florida EDEN is part of a nationwide effort of state Cooperative Extension Services to reduce the impact of disasters through research-based information.
Many Extension agents are serving in their county emergency operation centers (EOCs) and shelters. After the storm, Extension agents will be assissting with relief efforts and assessing damage.
Just as with all natural disasters, UF/IFAS Extension is ready and positioned to help Floridians ride out the storm, recover in its wake, and prepare for whatever happens next.
Stay alert and stay safe!