WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Hurricane Irma Preparations on the First Coast

Checking out where Hurricane Irma is headed as of 11 p.m. Saturday night.

LATEST FCN IRMA COVERAGE

Our Storm Experts are continuing to monitor and track the storm, with up-to-date information here.

GOV. RICK SCOTT ORDERS SCHOOL CLOSURES AHEAD OF IRMA

Gov. Rick Scott has ordered all public K-12 schools, state colleges, state universities and state offices be closed Friday, Sept. 8 to Monday, Sept. 11.

EVACUATION ORDERS

  • MANDATORY EVACUATIONS
    • St. Johns County: Zones A and B (includes entire City of St. Augustine, Town of Hastings).
    • Clay County has issued a mandatory evacuation for zones A, B and C.
    • Duval County: Zones A and B and mobile homes by 6 p.m. Saturday, September 9.
    • Camden County: East of I-95
    • Glynn County: All of Glynn County starting 8 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 8
    • Ware County (other Georgia counties, click here)
  • HYATT DOWNTOWN
    The Hyatt Downtown is evacuating all patrons and non-essential employees to shelters. 
  • VOLUNTARY EVACUATIONS
    • Flagler County: Woodlands, coastal areas and Intracoastal and low-lying areas of western Flagler County near Dead Lake (More info, click here)

TRAFFIC

The I-75 Florida to Georgia southbound lanes have been reversed to all northbound lanes to accommodate evacuation traffic. THIS APPLIES TO LANES IN GEORGIA.

LOCAL SHELTERS

Several counties across the First Coast have released a list of shelters that will be made available during Hurricane Irma. Click here to find out the locations and times.

GOV. RICK SCOTT'S ADDRESS REGARDING IRMA: SEPT. 7, 2017

Gov. Rick Scott is asking people to be prepared to evacuate. There are mandatory evacuation orders in effect for the Florida Keys. Top priorities include fuel supply. You can see more at our Facebook page here. His address begins about halfway through the recording.

FLIGHTS TO AND FROM JACKSONVILLE 

 All flights to and from JIA will end 7 p.m. Saturday.

U-HAUL OFFERS 30 DAYS OF FREE SELF-STORAGE

The franchise will offer free storage at 96 locations across Florida. More on this topic here.

COUNTIES ANNOUNCE LOCAL STATE OF EMERGENCIES

St. Johns County Emergency Management has called for a local State of Emergency. The declaration allows the county to access more resources and assistance to prepare for Hurricane Irma. 

St. Johns County has also discontinued the re-entry tag program which was implemented during Hurricane Matthew to prove that people attempting to re-enter St. Johns County were indeed living in St. Johns County. Instead, you will only need to show your St. Johns County Address on your license, state-issued identification card, or another form of identification such as a utility bill or lease agreement.

Nassau and Clay Counties have also announced States of Emergency.

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has issued a State of Emergency, which will impact Camden and Glynn Counties. Click here for more information.

A state of emergency has also been issued for the City of Atlantic Beach by its current mayor Mitch Reeves and city manager Joe Gerrity. Residents in the area are being asked to voluntarily evacuate the city beginning Thursday.

JACKSONVILLE MAYOR LENNY CURRY SPEAKS ON PREPARATIONS

City of Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry says to "prepare a kit, know your evacuation zone, and create a plan." For your evacuation zone, click here.

There have been shelters identified, the county is planning for 12 shelters and they will be announced when needed. For shelters in your area.

Make a plan, have a kit.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY EVACUATION ZONES

Do you live in an evacuation zone? Go here to find out.

HART BRIDGE TEMPORARY CLOSURE

In preparation for Hurricane Irma, the Hart Bridge in Jacksonville will be temporarily closed Thursday, September 7 starting at 9 a.m. until construction material including barricades and other equipment is completely removed.

MAIN STREET BRIDGE CLOSED FOR PART OF WEDNESDAY

The Main Street Bridge will be closed from 10 a.m. to around 4 p.m. as construction crews work to remove any debris that could become dangerous ahead of Hurricane Irma. 

GOV. SCOTT SPEAKS ABOUT PREPARING

Gov. Rick Scott spoke on Wednesday about preparing for the worst and hoping for the best. Though Irma's latest track has shown an eastern shift, Scott said it is the responsibility of every Floridian to be prepared.

Scott said that people with special medical needs will evacuate out of Miami and anyone in lower lying areas are suggested to do the same. In the Florida Keys, all visitors are being asked to evacuate and Wednesday evening all residents will be given evacuation orders as well.

Listen to your local officials and fill your prescriptions as early as you can, Scott urged.

He plans to dispatch 900 more National Guard members, meaning 1,000 will be put on active duty and ready to be dispatched to help. Scott said he plans to put all 6,000 members on active duty if needed.

Volunteers are needed if you can volunteer you can sign up here.

GOV. SCOTT WAIVES TOLLS IN FLORIDA

The Florida governor directed the Florida Department of Transportation to suspend tolls across the state in order to allow those wanting to evacuate to leave with ease.

FREE WATER FROM WICKED BARLEY BREWING CO.

The popular brewing company near Mandarin is giving out free water to those with containers through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. There is a limit, but feel free to stop by to get some water. Find out more here.

WATER

Winn-Dixie at 5207 Normandy has water in stock as of 4 p.m. Thursday.

FREE SANDBAGS 

Several counties across the First Coast are providing residents free sand and bags. The counties include Clay, Flagler, Putnam, Nassau and St. Johns County. Duval County is not providing sandbags. Click here to find sandbag locations.

MICROCHIP YOUR PETS 

Found.org will let any pet owner regardless of which company their pet has a microchip from, register their pet in their database. 

SCHOOL CLOSURES

Duval County Public Schools, the St. Johns County School District, the School District of Clay County and Jacksonville University has announced school cancelations ahead of Irma. Click here to see when schools are canceled.

FOOTBALL

Duval County Public Schools has announced that its Friday football games have been moved to Thursday at 6 p.m. Click here to find the games and times.

The University of Florida has canceled its football game that was scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 12. At this time, there has been no rescheduled date.

FSU also canceled its Saturday game that was scheduled Saturday, Sept. 12. At this time, there has been no rescheduled date.

CANCELATIONS AND CLOSURES

The Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve which includes Fort Caroline National Memorial and Kingsley Plantation will be closed as of 5 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 7 due to the approach of Hurricane Irma.  The visitor center and grounds at Fort Caroline National Memorial and Kingsley Plantation will remain closed until further notice. 

The Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens will be closed Sunday, September 10 and Monday, September 11. It will reopen that Tuesday.

The St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum and the Colonial Quarter will be closed until further notice after closing at regular business hours on Wednesday.

Bishop Felipe Estévez of the Catholic Diocese of St. Augustine will close all its diocesan offices and Catholic schools Friday, Sept. 8 and Monday, Sept. 11. Pastors at each parish will determine if they are celebrating Mass on Saturday or Sunday.

St. Johns County beaches will be closed to vehicles throughout the duration of the hurricane. All trash receptacles, portalets, cones and other beach infrastructure will be removed. The St. Johns County Ocean and Fishing Pier will also close on Friday, Sept. 8 and will remain closed for the storm.

The YMCA of Florida's First Coast will close ALL branches on Saturday, Sept. 9 through Monday, Sept. 11. Branches plan to reopen at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 12. All youth sports programs scheduled for those dates have been canceled.

Amtrak will suspend services in Florida due to severe weather impacting the southeast region.  Both these trains stop in Jacksonville and Palatka. The Silver Star Train 92 and Silver Meteor Train 98 (Miami - New York City) are canceled for Sept. 9 - 11. The Silver Star Train 91 (New York City - Miami) and Silver Meteor Train 97 (New York City - Miami) are canceled for Sept. 8 - 10.

FOR MORE CLOSURES CLICK HERE.

 

NASSAU COUNTY OFFICES

All Nassau County Clerk of the Circuit Court & Comptroller offices will be closed on Friday, Sept. 8 and Monday, Sept. 11. This includes the Robert M. Foster Justice Center and the Historic Courthouse. All court hearings in all courthouses have been canceled for those dates.

Nassau County Public Schools District offices will be closed on Friday, Sept. 8 and Monday, Sept. 11.

JACKSONVILLE OFFICES CLOSED

The Tax Collectors offices in Duval County will close Thursday, Sept. 7 at noon and remain closed throughout Friday, Sept. 8. They will reopen with Duval County government offices reopen.

All Duval County courts will be closed on Friday, Sept. 8 and Monday, Sept. 11, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.

Jacksonville Symphony offices at the Times Union Center for Performing Arts will close at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 7 and will reopen the morning of Sept. 12. Symphony Chorus auditions and Jacksonville Symphony Youth Orchestras rehearsals have been canceled.

The Early Learning Coalition of Duval will close all of its offices on Friday, Sept. 8 and Monday, Sept. 11. This includes the ELC office on the Southside at 8301 Plaza Drive, the Northside office at 5216 Pearl Street and the Westside office at 5310 Lenox Ave. All training scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 9 and Tuesday, Sept. 12 has also been canceled.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY OFFICES CLOSED

All administrative offices for St. Johns County, the City of St. Augustine and the City of St. Augustine Beach will be closed Friday, Sept. 8. and will remain closed until further notice.

BAKER COUNTY OFFICES CLOSED

All Baker County offices will be closed on Friday, Sept. 7 and Monday, Sept. 11.

CAMDEN COUNTY OFFICES CLOSED

All Camden County offices will be closed on Friday, Sept. 8 through Tuesday, Sept. 12.

GLYNN COUNTY OFFICES CLOSED

County offices and courts will be closed starting at noon on Friday, Sept. 8 and remain closed until Tuesday, Sept. 12.

ATLANTIC BEACH

The City of Atlantic Beach has imposed a 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew starting Saturday, Sept. 9 and ending Tuesday, Sept. 12. The beach will be closed 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 9.

Atlantic Beach will also be handing out sand at Jack Russel Park skate park and City Hall. Click here.

Events scheduled for the next week have been canceled.

2:00 p.m. Sept. 8, 2017

Hurricane Irma remains a Category 4 storm with sustained wind speeds of 155 mph. The National Hurricane Center reports that the storm is moving due west at 14 mph. The storm is approximately 380 miles southeast of Miami.

The Hurricane Warnings for the Turks and Caicos Islands have been discontinued. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 185 miles.

8:33 a.m. Sept 8, 2017

The Orange Park Police Department announced Clay County has run out of sandbags and sand.

8:07 a.m. Sept 8, 2017

The I-75 Florida to Georgia southbound lanes have been reversed to all northbound lanes to accommodate evacuation traffic. THIS APPLIES TO LANES IN GEORGIA.

8:00 a.m. Sept. 8, 2017

Hurricane Irma remains a Category 4 storm with maximum sustained wind speeds of 150 mph. The NHC reports that the storm is approximately 450 miles southeast of Miami and continues to travel west-northwestard at 16 mph. This motion is expected to continue for the next day or so with a decrease in forward speed.

Hurricane and Tropical Storm warnings for Haiti have been discontinued. It is predicted that the core of Hurricane Irma will move between central Bahamas and the north coast of Cuba today.

6:02 a.m. Sept 8, 2017 

Hurricane Irma has downgraded to a Category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 155 mph. The National Hurricane Center reports the storm is still very powerful as it treks towards Florida. 

12:00 p.m. Sept. 7, 2017

The Camden County Board of Commissioners, along with the cities of Kingsland, St. Marys, and Woodbine, joined with the Camden County Sheriff’s Office, Camden County Schools, and Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay have called for a voluntary evacuation for the citizens of Camden County.

10:40 a.m. Sept. 7, 2017

Flagler County has expanded its voluntary evacuation to include anyone who lives in a mobile home, a recreational vehicle, a trailer, or an unsafe structure – one that is not rated to withstand strong winds.

9:50 a.m. Sept. 7, 2017

Camden County Board of Commissioners have issued a State of Emergency for Camden County.

8:40 a.m. Sept. 7, 2017

Flagler County officials are requesting voluntary evacuation of residents who live in the Woodlands, coastal areas and Intracoastal, and the low lying areas of western Flagler County near Dead Lake. More information here.

8 a.m. Sept. 7, 2017

Hurricane Irma is steadily moving west-northwestward at 17 mph off the northern coast of Hispaniola. Maximum sustained wind speeds are now at 180 mph.

5 a.m. Sept 7, 2017 

Hurricane Irma is moving west-northwest with sustained winds of 185 mph.  

7 p.m. Sept. 6, 2017

The mayor of Atlantic Beach has issued a state of emergency for the area. Voluntary evacuations are in place starting Thursday.

3:38 p.m. Sept. 6, 2017

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has issued a State of Emergency, which will impact Camden and Glynn Counties. Click here for more information.

3:13 p.m. Sept 6, 2017

The ACE Hardware store at 5723 University Blvd. W, Jacksonville, FL 32216 has generators available for sale.

The Salvation Army of Northeast Florida's Child Development Center at 318 N. Ocean St. will be closed on Friday, Sept. 8.

1:45 p.m. Sept 6, 2017

Putnam County has declared a State of Emergency.  More information here

Nassau County has declared a State of Emergency. 

12:30 p.m. Sept 6, 2017 

The St. Augustine Beach Police took to Facebook to say: Attention: Most gas stations on Anastasia Island / St. Augustine Beach area are currently out of fuel. Fill up before you come back to the island.

12:15 p.m. Sept 6, 2017 

University of Florida's football game has been moved to 12 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 9.

12:00 p.m. Sept 6, 2017 

Naval Station Mayport Sends Ships to Sea Ahead of Hurricane Irma: As a precautionary measure, U.S. Navy ships home ported at Naval Station Mayport are getting underway in anticipation of Hurricane Irma.

9:00 a.m. Sept. 6, 2017 

Cruise giant Carnival and Disney Cruise Line late Tuesday joined Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line in cancelling upcoming sailings out of Florida as Hurricane Irma bears down on the state. More info here.

8:00 a.m. Sept. 6, 2017

Hurricane Irma, the most powerful Atlantic Ocean hurricane in recorded history, made its first landfall in the Caribbean early Wednesday as the Category 5 storm rolled toward a likely strike on the south Florida coast this weekend. Latest here.

2:41 p.m. Sept. 5, 2017

The Baker County Sheriff's Office is recommending residents prepare for the arrival of Hurricane Irma. More details can be found here.

2:08 p.m. Sept. 5, 2017

Clay County District Schools is actively monitoring Hurricane Irma. They will be sending alerts and more. Find out how you can get connected to them here.

12:34 p.m. Sept. 5, 2017

Ahead of Hurricane Irma, residents of Collier County are advised to evacuate the area, according to the sheriff's office. Read more here.

12:30 p.m. Sept. 5, 2017

Officials in the Florida Keys are gearing up to get tourists and residents out of the possible path of Hurricane Irma. 

Monroe County spokeswoman Cammy Clark says in a news release that a mandatory evacuation for tourists will begin at sunrise Wednesday. An evacuation plan for residents is also under way but a timetable hasn't been determined.

Clark says government offices, parks and schools will close and there will be no shelters in Monroe County. The county's three hospitals are also beginning evacuation plans.

U.S. 1 is the only route in and out of the island chain off the southern peninsula of Florida.

Clark says residents and tourists should begin filling their tanks with fuel to prepare to drive to the mainland.

11:16 a.m. Sept. 5, 2017

The City of Atlantic Beach has begun preparations for Hurricane Irma. More information can be found here.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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