Central Florida, including Lake County, is now under a Hurricane Warning. As residents heed the warning, provisions including bottled water, bread and D batteries were already scarce or sold out in local groceries stores before noon today.
“Lake County personnel and first responders are actively preparing for the serious threat that Hurricane Matthew could pose to Lake County,“ said Lake County Chairman Sean Parks. “Now is the time for residents to finalize their emergency plans, which include not only having a family communication plan, but also having enough supplies, such as food, water, and medication, for the entire family for up to three days.”
Residents should also get cash sufficient cash as ATM and credit card machines are inoperable during power outages. Gasoline may be in short supply after the storm, so ensuring vehicles have a full tank of gas is prudent.
In anticipation that significant rainfall and damaging winds could impact the county later this week, officials declared a local state of emergency for Lake County. The emergency operations team made storm preparation plans that include using many public schools as safety shelters. To accommodate that need, schools will be closed on Thursday and Friday this week. Students will make up lost instructional time on Nov. 21 and Nov. 22.
The forecasted track shows Hurricane Matthew approaching East Central Florida beginning Thursday, with the possibility of producing damaging tropical storm force winds and rain, flooding, tornadoes, downed trees and power lines and power outages. Residents should prepare for possible disruption of services to public transit offered through LakeXpress and Lake County Connection.
For low-lying areas prone to flooding, Lake County is offering sandbags at four Lake County Fire Rescue stations. Residents must bring their own shovels, and are allowed to take 20 bags of sand per household. Pickup hours are 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. at the following locations: Fire Station 10 23023 State Road 40 Astor Fire Station 14 42700 State Road 19 AltoonaFire Station 53 2505 Spring Lake Road Fruitland Park Fire Station 110 6234 County Road 561 Clermont Residents may call 352-253-9999, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., for up-to-date emergency information.. To sign up for the latest emergency notifications, visit www.alertlake.com.
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