For Saturday, September 9
Voluntary Evacuation Issued for Leon County
Today, Leon County issued a voluntary evacuation for Leon County due to the increasing likelihood of hurricane-force winds for an extended period of time. The voluntary evacuation is effective immediately until Sunday, September 10 at 8 p.m., at which time residents should shelter in place until winds subside. The National Weather Service has forecasted that tropical-storm-force or hurricane force winds will persist for at least 18 hours.
As our community braces for Hurricane Irma, Leon County Emergency Management is preparing for response and recovery operations and executing our emergency plans for this powerful storm.
- Shelter Locations:
- On Saturday, Leon County the Capital Area Chapter of the American Red Cross announced the following locations for shelter openings:
- A standalone special needs shelter opened at 7 a.m. Individuals on the special needs registry will utilize this shelter. Citizens who may need this resource are directed to call 850-606-3700.
- Oak Ridge Elementary School, 4530 Shelfer Road, is open.
- Canopy Oaks Elementary School, 3250 Point View Drive, is open.
- Rickards High School, 3013 Jim Lee Road, is open and is pet accessible.
- Lincoln High School, 3838 Trojan Trail, will open on Saturday at 6 p.m.
- S.A.I.L. High School, 2006 Jackson Bluff Road, will open on Saturday at 8 p.m.
- Chiles High School, 7200 Lawton Chiles Lane is currently open but has reached capacity.
- Northwoods Baptist Church has closed and shelterees were moved to another shelter.
- Shelterees are encouraged to bring food and medications to the shelter.
- Volunteers are still needed to assist in the operations of the shelters. To volunteer, call (850) 606-3700.
- Office, School, and University/College Closures:
- Leon County and City of Tallahassee offices and facilities will be closed through Tuesday, September 12.
- The Tuesday, September 12 Leon County Board of County Commissioners Meeting, Public Hearing, and Crime Statistics Workshop have been canceled.
- Leon County Schools will be closed through Tuesday, September 12.
- Florida A&M University and Tallahassee Community College will be closed through Tuesday, September 12.
- Florida State University will be closed all of next week, Monday, September 11th through Friday, September 15th, in the wake of Hurricane Irma.
- The FSU v. Louisiana-Monroe home football game on September 9 was canceled.
- State of Florida offices will be closed through Monday, September 11.
- The Tallahassee Veterans Affairs Health Care Center will be closed on Monday, September 11.
- Solid Waste Services:
- Waste Pro and Marpan will suspend curbside trash pickup services on Monday, September 11, and will resume on Tuesday, September 12, subject to storm event conditions.
- The Marpan Recycling Center will be closed on Monday, September 11 and will reopen on Tuesday, September 12, subject to storm event conditions.
- The Apalachee Rural Waste Service Center (RWSC) will be closed Monday, September 11 and Tuesday, September 12 for RWSC users. All other RWSC locations will remain open according to their normal operation schedule.
- The Leon County Household Hazardous Waste Center will be closed Monday, September 11 and Tuesday, September 12.
- Distribution Centers:
- Leon County plans to open Rural Distribution Centers as conditions allow following the storm.
- These distribution centers will provide the basic necessities including water, sanitary packs, and light food supplies as they are received at the following drive-up locations:
- Huntington Oaks Community Center
- Braden Community Center
- Miccosukee Community Center
- Woodville Community Center
- Chaires Community Center
- Although distribution centers will be opened, families should still plan to have 3-5 days of essential supplies on hand.
- Comfort Stations:
- After Hurricane Irma has passed and it has been determined that the roadways are safe and power is available, the Leon County Main Library downtown (200 West Park Avenue) will open as a comfort station.
- In coordination with local area agencies, the comfort station will offer a place to cool off, assistance and information on storm recovery efforts, charging stations for electronic devices, light snacks and refreshments, public access to computers and Wi-Fi , and more.
- The City of Tallahassee will open similar comfort stations, which will be listed on the County’s Emergency Information Portal (LeonCountyFL.gov/ei) and the City’s website (www.talgov.com/Irma).
To stay up-to-date on Leon County preparedness actions, such as sand bag locations, shelter openings and preparedness tips, you have the following resources:
- Download the Leon County Citizens Connect mobile application - Completely redesigned, the Citizens Connect mobile app puts timely emergency notifications at your fingertips through push notifications on your smartphone or other device. Be the first to know about shelter locations, road closures and service changes by downloading the application on the Apple and Google Play stores.
- Visit the Leon County Emergency Information Portal - Hosting the same information as the Citizens Connect app, the Emergency Information Portal can be accessed on a desktop or a mobile browser by visiting www.LeonCountyFL.gov/EI .
- Listen to 88.9 WFSU-FM - Citizens can tune in to 88.9 FM for the most up-to-date information from local public safety officials. Featuring to-the-minute reporting, WFSU, Leon County and the City of Tallahassee remain committed to getting information out on the radio as soon as possible.
- Call Big Bend 2-1-1 - If you need community information, services and support any day of the year, Big Bend 2-1-1 is reachable by dialing either 2-1-1 or (850) 617-6333.
- Call (850) 606-3700 with questions - Leon County Emergency Management staff is available to answer questions from what you should prepare, act and recover.
- For updates on City of Tallahassee Utilities and other City services, visit Talgov.com .
- Insurance Helpline - The Florida Department of Financial Services offers a toll-free Insurance Consumer Helpline to assist Florida's insurance consumers. Insurance Specialists are available to answer questions or concerns regarding insurance coverage and advocate on a consumer's behalf to resolve a dispute with an insurance company. To receive assistance, call 1-877-MY-FL-CFO (693-5236) toll-free, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Price Gouging - During a state of emergency, it is unlawful to sell or lease certain commodities for an amount that grossly exceeds the average price. To report price gouging, call 1-866-966-7226.
Sandbag Locations Leon County and the City of Tallahassee continue sand bag operations at the following locations:
- Tekesta Park, at Tekesta Drive and Deer Lake Road in Killearn Lakes
- Apalachee Regional Park (Landfill), 7550 Apalachee Parkway
- Lee Vause, 6024 Old Bainbridge Road
- At the intersection of Oak Ridge at Ranchero roads
- Jack McLean Community Center, 700 Paul Russell Road
- Winthrop Park, 1601 Mitchell Avenue
- James Messer Sports Complex, 2830 Jackson Bluff Road
- Lawrence-Gregory Community Center, 1115 Dade Street
Sites will no longer be staffed after 8 p.m on Saturday. Sand, bags and ties will be available for public use. Residents are asked to take no more than 15 bags so as to allow others to prepare. Staff will monitor the sites to replenish as needed.
Plan now because when disaster strikes it is too late to prepare. Leon County and the City of Tallahassee encourage citizens to put disaster supplies in a waterproof and durable five-gallon bucket. Keep these essential items near an exit door in your home or in your vehicle.
Some important items include a flashlight, medications, nonperishable food and water. You can see a full list of preparedness items at www.HaveAHurricanePlan.com/guide.pdf . The 2017 Disaster Survival Guide can also be picked up at any Leon County public library or City of Tallahassee community center.
Once you and your family have a hurricane preparedness plan in place, check on your neighbors to ensure that they have one, too. Neighborhoods that prepare together create strong support networks that are vital to a speedy recovery. In the event of a major disaster, your neighbors will be your closest resource and support.
Also, while Leon County is not under any watch or warning at this time, it is important to know the difference between a hurricane watch and a hurricane warning. A hurricane watch is an announcement that hurricane conditions (sustained winds of 74 miles per hour or higher) are possible within a specified area. Watches are generally issued 48 hours in advance of a hurricane winds. A warning is that conditions are expected, and these are issued 36 hours in advance.
Prepare your home for strong winds by visually inspecting trees on your property for poor health and reduce the risk to your home by trimming hanging limbs. If you have any questions about your tree's health, contact a Certified Arborist to assist you.
The Capital Area Chapter of the American Red Cross is offering training this week for citizens interested in volunteering during a shelter activation. Learn more by calling 878-6080. Volunteer applications are available at RedCross.org.
Please prepare now before any watches or warnings are issued for Leon County. If you have any questions about how best to prepare, please call Leon County Emergency Management at (850) 606-3700.
For current information about local preparedness and response, please follow or Twitter.com/LeonCounty .
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