It's not too early to start getting ready. Disaster prevention should include developing a plan. Discuss the type of hazards that could affect your family, such as storm surges, flooding and strong wind. Determine escape routes from your home and places to meet should you be separated. Check your insurance coverage. Be advised that flood damage is not usually covered by homeowner’s insurance. Be prepared for possible intense weather by stocking up on non-perishable foods, baby foods or pet foods, blankets, bottled water, batteries, flashlights, medications, a battery powered radio, first aid kit, cash, important documents and any other necessities to last up to seven days. As always, please listen to local weather advisories and continue to monitor the storm.
One of the most important decisions you will have to make is whether or not to evacuate. If you are asked to evacuate, you should do so without delay. For more information, visit https://www.floridadisaster.org/info
As always, remember that my office is open and available to assist you. For help with emergency resources, please contact my office at either (904)354-1652 (Jacksonville), (850) 558-9450 (Tallahassee), or (202) 225-0123 (Washington, DC). You can also find me on Facebook and on Twitter at @RepAlLawsonJr.
HURRICANE DORIAN UPDATE
The latest predictions from the National Hurricane Center have put Dorian just off Florida’s central coast as a strong Category 3 storm, with winds up to 125 mph – making landfall early Monday. A state of emergency has been declared for Florida. Hurricane Dorian strengthened overnight Thursday and is expected to make landfall as Category 4 hurricane. The National Hurricane Center said it is "expected to become a major hurricane on Friday and remain an extremely dangerous hurricane through the weekend," with top forecast winds of 140 mph.
- LEON COUNTY -- Sandbags will be available starting at noon at James Messer Park South, located at 2830 Jackson Bluff Road, and at the old Northwood Mall, located at 1940 N. Monroe St. Residents are asked to bring their own shovels. There is a 25-bag limit per household. The city is also checking known drainage trouble spots to clear any obstructions. City residents can report flooded streets by calling 850-891-4868.
- GADSDEN COUNTY -- A sandbag location will open for the community on Thursday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the Post Plant Pit, on 1090 Post Plant Road, Quincy, FL. People are limited to 15 sandbags per household and are required to bring their own shovels. For elderly and special needs citizens, Gadsden County Public Works employees will be on hand to help.
- DUVAL COUNTY – Work crews began clearing Jacksonville drainage systems. County is not providing sandbags. Residents are instructed to check local Home Depots or local home appliance stores for sand bag information.
- JEFFERSON COUNTY – Sandbags will be available on Saturday 9 a.m.-12 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m.-3 p.m. for Jefferson county residents only with a limit of 10 bags per household. Sandbag locations are the old fire department next to County Road Department, Lloyd between post office and volunteer fire department, Wacissa at the old post office. Residents are being asked to keep whatever sandbags they do not use to keep them for use in the future.
- MADISON COUNTY – Sandbags are now available in preparation for Hurricane Dorian at Madison County EOC, located at 1083 SW Harvey Greene Drive, Madison, Florida 32340. There is a limit of 10 bags per person. Contact Madison County Emergency Management if you have any questions at (850) 973-3698.
- HAMILTON COUNTY – Offering sand bags at the Annex. For more information contact Hamilton Emergency Services
- COLUMBIA COUNTY— Announcement regarding possible sandbag locations expected later this afternoon. Please continue to monitor the Columbia County Emergency Management Facebook page for more information.
- BAKER COUNTY – Sandbags will be made available from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the City Yard location on 764 Hartline Drive. Limit of 10 bags per household for Baker County Residents only – be prepared to show valid proof of residency when asked.
All Florida VA Medical Centers have activated their Incident Command Centers and are actively preparing for potential impacts to their facilities.
FEMA Disaster Assistance: (800) 621-3362
Florida Help Line: 211
Florida Power and Light: (800) 468-8243
State Volunteer and Donations: (800) 354-3571
American Red Cross: (904) 358-8091
Price Gouging Hotline: (866) 966-7226
Duval Sherriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (904) 630-0500
Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (850) 997-2523
Gadsden County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (850) 627-9233
Leon County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (850) 606-3300
Madison County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (850) 973-4151
Baker County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (904) 259-2231
Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (386) 362-2222
Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Non-Emergency: (386) 752-9212
Madison County Emergency Management:(850) 973-3698
Baker County Emergency Management: (904) 259-6111
Leon County Emergency Management:(850) 488-5921
Duval County Emergency Management:(904) 630-2472
Gadsden County Emergency Management:(850) 875-8642
Jefferson County Emergency Management: (386) 792-6647
Hamilton County Emergency Management: (386) 792-6647
Columbia County Emergency Management:(386) 752-8787
Social Media outlets:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA):
Florida Division of Emergency Management:
Florida Department of Transportation:
Florida Public Radio Emergency Network:
Jacksonville – 89.9 WJCT-FM
Tallahassee – 88.9 WFSU-FM
Florida Division of Emergency Management:
Emergency Alerts Sign up:
After the storm:
If you’d like to volunteer or help with recovery efforts, you can sign up here.