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Manatee County, Florida, has issued a voluntary evacuation for residents living along the coast.
“The evacuation is scheduled to begin at 7 a.m. on Friday, September 8, ahead of Hurricane Irma. The county recommended those who live in low-lying areas — which is categorized as Zone A within the county — and those living in mobile and manufactured homes to evacuate,” Fox 13 reports.
Residents in the Manatee County area are encouraged to evacuate inland, staying with family or friends. It’s important to have a plan before you leave your home.
The map below shows evacuation levels which are not the same as flood zone levels.
“Hurricane evacuation levels are based on hypothetical storm scenarios, factoring in atmospheric pressure, size, speed, and track to determine the potential storm surge for the location,” according to the Manatee County website.
On Friday at 4 p.m. Eastern, the following four shelters will open in Manatee County. Three of these shelters are pet friendly and will welcome dogs, cats, and any pets in cages (such as rabbits). Authorities have said that these shelters should be used as a “last option” for people who decide to leave the area.
– Myakka Elementary School, 37205 Manatee Ave., Myakka City
– Braden River (pet friendly), 6215 River Club Blvd., Bradenton
– Manatee High School (pet friendly), 1000 32nd Street West, Bradenton
– Mills Elementary (pet friendly), 7200 69th Street East, Palmetto
On Monday, September 4, Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for all Florida counties via Executive Order 17-235.
Hurricane Irma continues to wreak havoc in the Caribbean, currently sitting off the coast of the island of Hispaniola. Irma is approximately 75 miles ENE of Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic. The storm is moving WNW at 16 mph. She is expected to arrive in southern Florida this weekend. The latest GFS and European models show Irma hugging the east coast of the Sunshine State.