Governor Ron DeSantis declares emergency for ENTIRE STATE of Florida, over forecast predicting Tropical Storm Ian will strengthen into 'major hurricane' and hit the Sunshine State mid week
September 25, 2022
Ian is forecast to rapidly strengthen in the coming days before moving over western Cuba and making landfall in Florida in the middle of next week.
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- Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Saturday declared a state of emergency for the state as Ian gathers strength over the Caribbean
- It's expected to bring heavy rain, intense hurricane winds to the state next week
- DeSantis initially issued the emergency order for two dozen counties on Friday, but has now expanded the warning to the entire state's 67 counties
- Residents and local governments will now prepare for a storm that could lash large swaths of Florida
- Ian is forecast to rapidly strengthen in the coming days before moving over western Cuba and making landfall in Florida in the middle of next week
- Storm could begin hitting southern Florida late on Monday or Tuesday morning
- It is first expected to hit Jamaica, Cuba and the Cayman Islands
- Storm has forced NASA to call off the scheduled Tuesday launch of its historic unmanned mission to the Moon
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has declared a state of emergency for his entire state as Tropical Storm Ian gathers strength over the Caribbean and forecasters say it could slam into the Sunshine State early next week.
DeSantis originally issued the order for 24 counties on Friday, but on Saturday widened the declaration to encompass all 67 counties in Florida.
He encouraged residents and local governments to make preparations as the storm moves toward the state. The Florida National Guard has also been activated.
DeSantis has further requested a federal pre-landfall emergency declaration.
'This storm has the potential to strengthen into a major hurricane and we encourage all Floridians to make their preparations,' DeSantis said.
'We are coordinating with all state and local government partners to track potential impacts of this storm.'
President Joe Biden also declared an emergency for the state, authorizing the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, to coordinate disaster relief efforts and provide assistance to protect lives and property.
Under the order, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency.
The emergency protective measures, include direct Federal assistance, under the Public Assistance program which will be provided at 75 percent Federal funding.
The president also postponed a scheduled September 27 trip to Florida due to the storm.
The storm is expected to strengthen into a category 4 hurricane before striking the Florida coast.
Tropical Storm Ian is in the southern Caribbean but is expected to bring heavy rain and intense hurricane winds to the state next week.
The storm could begin hitting southern Florida late on Monday or Tuesday morning, with this graphic showing one potential path.
The National Hurricane Centre said Ian is forecast to rapidly strengthen in the coming days before moving over western Cuba and approach Florida next week with major hurricane force.
John Cangialosi, a senior hurricane specialist with National Hurricane Centre in Miami, said it is currently unclear where Ian will hit hardest in Florida and said residents should begin preparing for the storm, including gathering supplies for potential power outages.
'It's too soon to say if it's going to be a south-east Florida problem or a central Florida problem or just the entire state,' he said to WESH. 'So, at this point, really the right message for those living in Florida is that you have to watch forecasts and get ready and prepare yourself for potential impact from this tropical system.'
The weather system is currently churning southeast of Jamaica and was declared a tropical storm Friday night. It is projected to hit populated areas with heavy rains and high winds starting Sunday.
The storm could begin hitting southern Florida late on Monday or Tuesday morning. It is first expected to hit Jamaica, Cuba and the Cayman Islands, according to the US National Hurricane Center.
An official from Monroe County, whose county seat is Key West - the southern most island of the Florida Keys - told the Miami Herald they had not yet made the decision to order evacuations but could re-evaluate.
Sarasota Mayor Erik Arroyo said the city had been in touch with Florida Power & Light and urged residents to prepare for the storm.
'Be proactive, contact your doctor, make sure you stock up on your medications,' he said. 'Have some water, some basic necessities.'
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