September 3, 2019, PM Update – While Hurricane Dorian remains a powerful hurricane, the Florida forecast for sustained hurricane force winds has diminished and instead, forecasters expect hurricane force gusts tonight and tomorrow, especially from Brevard through Volusia Counties. A National Hurricane Center forecaster late this afternoon said the team there is “fairly highly confident” there will not be a direct landfall in Florida. Little change in Dorian’s intensity is expected in the next 48 hours.
Dorian continues its trek to the northwest away from Florida’s east coast, now at a faster 7mph. Maximum sustained winds are 110 mph, which is a Category 2 hurricane. Note that it’s only 1 mph from being a Cat 3 and it will remain a powerful hurricane for the next few days.
Melbourne Beach was seeing wind gusts of 60 mph late this afternoon.
This is how close we are cutting it. Dorian is expected to remain 50-60 miles offshore as it goes up the coast. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 60 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles. So forecasters say hurricane force gusts could impact Volusia beginning tonight, especially since the storm’s wind zone has expanded.
Hurricane Warnings have been adjusted as a result. A Hurricane Warning is in effect from Sebastian Inlet (just south of Melbourne) north to Ponte Vedra Beach. The Hurricane Warning has been changed to a Tropical Storm Warning from Sebastian Inlet (south of Melbourne) south to Jupiter Inlet. The Tropical Storm Warning has been discontinued south of Jupiter Inlet.
Rainfall totals are expected to be 3-6” which is still enough to cause life-threatening flash floods.
The Storm Surge forecast has changed a bit. A Storm Surge Warning remains in effect from Jupiter Inlet north to Surf City, North Carolina. A 3-5 feet surge is possible from the Volusia/Brevard County line north into Georgia, with 2-4 feet of surge from Jupiter Inlet to the Volusia/Brevard County line. There’s also potential for 2-4 feet of surge in the intracoastal waterway and in the St. Johns River, especially around Palatka. Forecasters say they’re concerned that Ponte Vedra Beach may see ocean overwash of its dunes, especially given damage from Hurricane Matthew.
The St. Johns River, which runs north through 8 counties from south of Orlando to the mouth of the Atlantic Ocean in Jacksonville, is going to flood. Forecasters said this morning that the St. Johns River will definitely be impacted by Dorian’s surge and rainfall. This will cause creeks and streams to back up, especially in communities on the eastern shores of the river. One of them is Deep Creek, near Hastings, and Dunns Creek near Satsuma, both in Putnam County. Moderate flooding will impact structures in that area. Emergency managers today reported the Dunns Creek and San Mateo areas of Putnam County are flooding, right along the St. Johns River there.
The National Hurricane Center is also making available its Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map available, that allows you to zoom in on specific communities for potential storm surge flooding potentials. Here’s the one from the greater Jacksonville area.
On this track tonight, the core of Hurricane Dorian will remain dangerously close to the Florida east coast and the Georgia coast tonight through Wednesday night. Dorian’s hurricane force track now shifts to the Carolinas. A Hurricane Warning has been issued from Savannah River to Edisto Beach, South Carolina, and from South Santee River, South Carolina, to Surf City, North Carolina (just south of Myrtle Beach).
The Governor held a news conference this afternoon in Tallahassee with FEMA’s acting administrator. He asked residents to remain vigilant, but noted Dorian “was very, very close to impacting us in a very, very major way.” He said it appears Dorian is not going to be as damaging as 2016’s Hurricane Matthew, but that we will still see some wind damage and flooding. He reminded everyone that we are in the heart of hurricane season, so we need to stay prepared.
The Governor thanked the state emergency management team and those in the individual counties who continue to work tonight, for their hard work over the past seven days of preparation and response. Division of Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz reiterated that the state, through its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) “is here and prepared to respond to the needs of the counties.” He said once the storm clears, the state will be looking at helping the Bahamas, which suffered devastating damage and at least five deaths from Dorian’s strike.
One Bahamas resident in a televised interview said what was most surprising was the flood waters. Flooding is also the bigger worry tonight in Central and Northern Florida along the beach communities and those along inland streams and rivers.
Florida Power & Light, which is the major electric provider on the east coast had responded to about 60,000 outages by early afternoon. There are nearly 28,000 utility and tree crews staged across the state ready to respond to outages created by Dorian’s winds.
Damage at this point appears to be mostly beach erosion and some flooded streets. Claims Response Teams from across the insurance spectrum are standing by to hit the streets, once Dorian has passed and it’s safe to do so.
Shelters remain open tonight in counties with active weather threats, but others have closed or will close tomorrow in those areas no longer under advisories. (See News from the Governor’s Office below for a complete list of state preparedness actions.)
Meanwhile, traffic on roadways in the affected areas was reported light today. Port Everglades is expected to reopen by this evening to resume offloading fuel from ships onto tanker trucks for delivery to retail stations, some of which are still reporting low gasoline supplies. Jacksonville International Airport and Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport were open today but all airports in between along the coast were closed, including Orlando International Airport.
Also of note: the volume of price gouging complaints has abated over the past 24 hours, as the Attorney General and retail groups warned vendors not to violate state law and take advantage of people in their time of need.
Please know that we at Lisa Miller & Associates are here 24/7 for you …don’t forget it. It may sound trite but we are all in this together, my friends and colleagues. Please prepare and be aware!
Lisa & the LMA team
Here’s the latest News from the Governor’s Office of specific state preparedness actions, with updates noted in orange:
- The following counties have issued mandatory evacuation orders for coastal areas:
- Brevard County
- Duval County
- Flagler County
- Indian River County
- Martin County
- Nassau County
- Palm Beach County
- Putnam County
- St. Johns County
- St. Lucie County
- Volusia County
- The following counties have issued voluntary/phased evacuation orders for coastal areas:
- Glades County
- Hendry County
- Highlands County
- Okeechobee County
- Osceola County
- For up to date information on evacuation orders, including exact locations and zones, please visit https://www.floridadisaster.org/evacuation-orders/.
- General Shelters open: 115
- Special Needs Shelters open: 48
- For up to date information on shelter operations, including locations please visit https://www.floridadisaster.org/shelter-status/ or https://floridadisaster.org/planprepare/disability/disability-shelters/
- Comcast opened its network of almost 200,000 Xfinity WiFi hotspots throughout Florida to anyone who needs them, including non-Xfinity customers, free of charge.
- Charter Communications, Inc. has opened more than 32,000 Spectrum WiFi hotspots from Volusia County to Pinellas County – open to all users until further notice in Spectrum service areas across the state.
- The Department of Management Services (DMS) is coordinating with telecommunications providers to ensure coordinated recovery efforts to aid in the emergency response and recovery after the storm has passed. Telecommunications vendors have assets staged around the state, including:
- Portable emergency communication vehicles that provide limited cellular services in areas where cell towers are damaged;
- Mobile command centers for telecommunication restoration crews;
- Device charging stations for shelters;
- Portable generators for cell towers and other utility equipment; and
- Staged fuel tanks for cell site generators.
- There are almost 25,000 linemen, tree crews, and support personnel staged around Florida to help quickly restore power.
- Verizon is offering unlimited calling, texting and data for customers in the path of the hurricane. Verizon’s prepaid, postpaid and small-business customers in the path of the hurricane will have unlimited calling, data and texting from September 2 – September 9.
- AT&T announced it is waiving data overages in affected Florida areas from September 2 – September 8.
- The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) has escorted fuel trucks to ensure fuel reaches critical areas more quickly. The State is working closely with the fuel industry to ensure there is an adequate fuel supply statewide.
- Through Executive Order 19-189, Governor DeSantis waived hours of service and truck weights for fuel trucks. Neighboring states, specifically Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia have waived requirements as well so that fuel can be moved more quickly and efficiently.
- Florida officials are working with ports along the East Coast of Florida to monitor resources and assist with closures and re-openings.
FOOD AND WATER
- The State has 819,000 gallons of water and 1.8 million meals ready for distribution.
- The State has submitted a request to FEMA for 9 million liters of water and 6.5 million shelf-stable meals.
- The State has pre-deployed 860,000 bottles of water to preparing counties.
- The State has 730,000 pounds of ice ready for distribution.
- Following Governor DeSantis’ authorization, Florida Guardsmen have been activated to State Active Duty for Hurricane Dorian response operations, supporting in a variety of statuses, bringing the total number of responding Soldiers and Airmen to 4,848.
- The Florida National Guard is currently supporting the following missions:
- Staffing and supporting the State Logistics Readiness Center (SLRC) in Orlando;
- Operating a Logistics Staging Area (LSA) in White Springs;
- Providing LNOs to 17 counties;
- Supporting two aviation missions in Miami-Dade County;
- Providing support to Law Enforcement at 3 bridge missions in St. Johns County; and
- Staffing a total of 11 shelter missions (6 in Putnam County, 3 in St. Johns County, and 2 in Flagler County).
- The Florida National Guard is well-equipped, with assets including high-wheeled vehicles, helicopters, boats, generators and more.
SAFETY AND SECURITY
- 38 Urban Search and Rescue Task Forces in Florida are ready for engagement.
- Four reconnaissance teams have been deployed and are ready for engagement.
- Two HazMat Teams have been deployed and are ready for engagement.
- A Helicopter Search and Rescue Team (HSART) is currently on standby with eight different airframes (two UH-60 Blackhawks, two CH-47 Chinooks, two HH-60 Blackhawks and two LUH-72 Lakotas), which will provide search and rescue capabilities in support of State Search and Rescue if needed.
- Four FWC Special Operations Group (SOG) members will provide force protection through air missions for Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) and the Florida National Guard.
- FWC has more than 800 officers and resources prepared for potential deployment wherever they are needed. They have a variety of specialized equipment, including, aircraft, shallow draft boats, ATVs, airboats and four-wheel drive vehicles to assist with recovery.
- More than 1,200 state sworn law enforcement officers are on standby for potential deployment.
- The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) has prepared its emergency response equipment and resources for staging as the storm approaches the state.
- FHP continues to work with its local law enforcement and transportation partners to identify and assist with any local needs before, during and after the storm.
- FHP is providing 2 Troopers for security at each of the open Service Plazas on the Florida Turnpike to expedite service at the fuel pumps.
- FHP has 68 Quick Reaction Force (QRF) Troopers on standby for pre-deployment.
- FHP has activated 12-hour Alpha/Bravo shifts for approximately 1,400 Troopers in the Eastern portions of the state.
- FHP has deployed an aircraft to monitor traffic at I-95 and I-10.
- To assist local officials with evacuations and traffic safety, FHP has 10 troopers assigned to assist in Nassau County and 14 troopers assigned to St. Johns County.
- FHP provided evacuation escorts of critical care patients from St. Lucie County hospitals.
- FHP is working with the Florida National Guard to provide security and evacuation assistance in St. Johns County at multiple bridge locations.
- FHP is assisting Flagler County with controlling access to evacuated barrier island areas.
- Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Florida Licensing on Wheels (FLOW) mobiles have been prepared and are ready to deploy and serve impacted customers immediately following the storm.
- FDLE’s mutual aid team is leading Florida’s law enforcement response coordinating more than 50 missions including evacuations, security, and pre-staging.
- FDLE has pre-positioned logistics teams along Florida’s East coast ready to respond after the storm makes landfall.
- FDLE has a mobile communications team pre-positioned to ensure emergency communications continue following the storm.
- FWC has more than 800 officers and resources prepared for potential deployment wherever they are needed. They have a variety of specialized equipment, including, aircraft, shallow draft boats, ATVs, airboats and four-wheel drive vehicles to assist with recovery.
TRANSPORTATION & PUBLIC WORKS
- Governor DeSantis has directed the suspension of tolls on Florida’s Turnpike Mainline, and selected toll roads across the state.
- The toll suspensions include the following:
- Alligator Alley
- The Turnpike Mainline (SR 91), including the -Homestead Extension (SR 821)
- Sawgrass Expressway (SR 869)
- Beachline Expressway (SR 528)
- SR 417 – Eastern beltway around Orlando from I-4 in Osceola County to I-4 in Seminole County.
- SR 429 – The Daniel Webster Western Beltway from I-4 in Osceola County to US 441 in Apopka.
- I-95 Express Lanes
- I-595 Express Lanes
- I-75 Express Lanes
- I-295 Express
- SR 23
- Tolls suspended as announced by the Central Florida Expressway Authority:
- SR 408
- SR 414
- SR 451
- SR 453
- SR 538
- SR 551
- Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise has reopened two of three service plazas that were previously closed for safety precautions.
- West Palm Beach Service Plaza – Fuel pumps and the convenience store will reopen Tuesday, September 3 at 7:00 p.m.
- Fort Drum Service Plaza – Fuel pumps and the convenience store will reopen Tuesday, September 3 at 8:00 p.m.
- Food services at both locations will be available tomorrow, making seven of the eight service plazas under Florida’s Turnpike fully operational.
- Fort Pierce Service Plaza remains closed.
- FDOT is coordinating with its utility partners to pre-position cut and toss debris clearing crews with utility crews, facilitating quicker utility restoration.
- FDOT damage assessment teams are out performing inspections following the storm in southern coastal counties and continue this afternoon and early tomorrow.
- FDOT is working with state and local officials to assess the current situation and needs and holding teleconferences with the FDOT district offices.
- Florida’s 511 Traveler Information System is one of the most effective ways drivers can keep informed about the state’s roadways during severe weather.
- FDOT is operating the I-595 Express lanes in the westbound direction until Hurricane Dorian has passed. Eastbound traffic will continue to use the general-purpose eastbound lanes throughout this period.
- Currently traffic is flowing smoothly with no major issues.
- Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport is open to all flight operations.
- Palm Beach International Airport has suspended all commercial flights.
- Daytona Beach International Airport has suspended all commercial flights.
- Jacksonville International Airport is open to all flight operations.
- Melbourne International Airport has suspended all commercial flights.
- Orlando Sanford International Airport is closed to all but military and emergency service flights
- Orlando International Airport is expected is closed to all but military and emergency service flights
- Airports on the west coast of Florida are open to all flight operations.
- The following Florida seaports are currently closed:
- Port of Fort Pierce
- Port of Palm Beach
- Port Canaveral
- Port of Fernandina
- Port of Jacksonville
- Port Miami and Port Everglades are now open.
- DMS is actively monitoring local conditions to determine the closure status of state buildings. As local conditions change, DMS will make updates for state building closures at: (https://www.dms.myflorida.com/business_operations/real_estate_development_and_management/bureau_of_operations_and_maintenance/building_closure_information
- State buildings in the following counties will be closed on Wednesday, Sept. 4: Bradford, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Lake, Martin, Nassau, Orange, Osceola, Putnam, St. Johns, St. Lucie, Seminole, and Volusia.
- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is redirecting resources from Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to Florida.
- The Corps has received a FEMA Regional Activation Mission Assignment to provide an ESF 3 (Public Works & Engineering) team leader, assistant team leader and subject matter expert on debris, infrastructure assessments and water/wastewater.
- The Corps also received a mission assignment for temporary roofing planning, temporary emergency power, temporary public facilities and debris planning.
- Lake Okeechobee is at 13.81 feet as of September 3, 2019.
- The U.S. Army Corps expects the lake to rise up to 2-3.5 feet because of Hurricane Dorian. The Corps continues to indicate they are not concerned about Herbert Hoover Dike integrity and potential storm surge on the lake.
- During the storm, the U.S. Army Corps is not releasing water. After the storm, the Corps expects to make releases through St. Lucie/Caloosahatchee.
- The Corps is continuing to monitor their construction sites around the Lake with each storm update and informing Emergency Managers of its condition.
PUBLIC HEALTH AND MEDICAL
- The Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) has activated the Emergency Status System (ESS) for health care facilities statewide to enter their storm preparedness status including generators and utility company information, emergency contacts, and bed availability.
- Information about nursing homes and assisted living facilities generator status can be found here: http://fl-generator.com/.
- Of the 3,062 licensed assisted living facilities (ALF) in Florida, 3,021 facilities have a generator on site. Five facilities have emergency plans to evacuate if needed. AHCA is conducting extensive outreach with these facilities to ensure generators are being acquired or there are appropriate plans to evacuate in place.
- AHCA has confirmed that every ALF and nursing home located in a coastal county along Florida’s East Coast from Palm Beach County north to Nassau County either has a generator on site or has plans to evacuate.
- AHCA is deploying staff to any facility in the coastal counties for which we do not have current updated information on their generator status.
- 684 nursing homes have a generator and must have the generator onsite as a result of the state of emergency, and 3 facilities have emergency plans to evacuate if needed.
- AHCA is participating in daily calls with the Florida Health Care Association and all residential and inpatient healthcare facilities, and the Florida Hospital Association and all hospitals.
- Nursing Home and Hospital Evacuations:
- 95 nursing homes and assisted living facilities along the east coast have been evacuated.
- Some Florida hospitals have begun evacuating or are making plans to evacuate.
- Full Evacuation (8):
o Advent Health New Smyrna (Volusia County)
o Baptist Medical Center Nassau (Nassau County)
o Baptist Medical Center – Beaches (Duval County)
o Cape Canaveral (Brevard County)
o Cleveland Clinic South (Martin County)
o Good Samaritan Medical Center (Palm Beach County)
o Steward Sebastian River Medical Center (Indian River County)
o Halifax Psychiatric Center North (Volusia County)
- The Department of Health (DOH) currently has no active boil water notices. However, it has two webpages that will be updated in real-time as notices are issued.
- DOH has communicated with County Health Departments (CHDs) to pre-identify and pre-stage resources.
- DOH is monitoring availability for 10 Nursing Strike Teams, 10 Medical Task Forces and 10 Ambulance Strike Teams through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC).
- DOH has conducted outreach to all 280 EMS providers in Florida to determine availability of ambulance strike teams.
- DOH has distributed general sanitation messaging to CHDs for all shelters through MassCare, encouraging disinfection of restrooms at least once a day.
- DOH has requested 390 EMS resources through the National EMS Contract for ambulances and para-transit vehicles.
- 150 personnel, including nursing staff, has been mobilized to assist special-needs shelters.
- DOH has requested 10 Nursing Strike Teams through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC).
- DOH is drop-shipping 2,365 doses of Narcan to all 67 County Health Departments to be distributed to all shelters. Additionally, DOH is distributing fact sheets to shelters to educate how to recognize signs of an overdose.
- DOH is coordinating with fuel vendors, who are prepared to support all hospitals and assisted living facilities (ALS) in the potential areas of impact.
- 319 ambulances are staged throughout Florida ready to assist with health care facility evacuations.
- Disaster Medical Assistance Teams (DMAT) Task Forces are also strategically placed throughout the state to provide emergency medical support to hospitals.
- 21 counties have open shelters for special needs citizens throughout the East Coast. 2,094 special needs clients are in those shelters. 555 caregivers are positioned at those shelters.
- No storm-related sewage spills have been reported to the State Watch Office.
- The Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) is actively monitoring the storm, providing updates, and regularly communicating with employees, stakeholders, waiver support coordinators, and providers to ensure the health and safety of the customers the agency serves.
- APD’s Recovery Toolkit at www.apdcares.org provides the latest information about the hurricane, disaster preparations and resources before and after the storm.
- The APD state-run facilities located in Gainesville, Chattahoochee, and Marianna have secured homes, buildings, vehicles, and grounds in preparation for the approaching storm.
- 62 APD licensed group homes along the East Coast of the state have evacuated to areas not expected to be impacted by the storm.
- The Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs (FDVA) operates six skilled nursing facilities and one assisted living facility. All state veterans’ homes are currently operational.
- A toll-free number has been established for veterans who receive care in the impacted area. Call 1-800-507-4571 to receive information on where to go for care, how to receive prescription drugs, or any other concerns they may have about their care. The phone line will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Information on current federal, state and local veterans’ programs, entitlements and referral services is available through a network of County Veteran Service Offices. Counselors are trained and accredited annually by the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs. All services are provided free of charge. A list of local offices can be found online at www.FloridaVets.org/benefits-services.
- The Department of Elder Affairs (DOEA) is working with our Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) to coordinate the transfer of phone lines and Elder Helplines in areas that may be impacted by power outages.
- Working with our Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs), DOEA remains vigilant in tracking the storm and are in constant contact with our local service providers, who currently have no unmet needs.
- DOEA is working with our local service providers to assist in transporting clients to emergency shelters, as appropriate, and we are coordinating to ensure that our clients under mandatory evacuations are following those orders.
- DOEA has provided shelf-stable meals to home-delivered meal clients throughout the state.
- DOEA is also in contact with one of our contracted managed care organizations in South Florida regarding their emergency response efforts planned for after the storm. They have prepared and staged two tractor trailers, each with 4,700 boxes of emergency meals. One trailer will be staged in Tampa and the other in Miami with ground crews ready to deploy emergency meals to any impacted area with DOEA’s elderly or disabled clients following the storm.
- The Department of Children and Families (DCF) has activated the departments’ disaster-related information website:www.myflfamilies.com/disaster.
- DCF announced it has been approved by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to issue Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits.
- SNAP customers who were scheduled to receive their benefits between September 1 and September 14 can now access those benefits using their Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards. This is an early release of regular benefits, not a distribution of additional funds.
- DCF is communicating with community-based-care lead agencies to ensure there are plans in place to begin making pre-landfall status checks on children in the department’s care.
- Continue to check the DCF website at: www.myflfamilies.com/disaster and social media accounts for the latest updates.
- DCF is holding daily calls with regional directors, program leads, and facility directors to ensure programs and facilities are prepared.
- DCF offices in Bradford, Brevard, Broward, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Glades, Hendry, Highlands, Indian River, Lake, Levy, Martin, Okeechobee, Orange, Palm Beach, Polk, Putnam, St. Johns, St. Lucie, Seminole, Sumter, and Volusia.
- The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has completed pre-storm beach surveys, and pre-storm prep guidance has been distributed to all hazardous waste, drinking water and wastewater facilities.
- Florida state park closures can be found at www.floridastateparks.org/StormUpdates.
- State Office closure information, including DEP offices, can be found here.
- Visitors with existing camping and cabin reservations at impacted parks will be notified by ReserveAmerica of their reservation status. Cancellation fees have been waived for overnight accommodations.
- 1038 Disaster Debris Management Sites have been pre-authorized and 76 authorized for the 67 counties addressed by the Governor’s Executive Order.
- An online tool for the public to report the location of storm debris has been deployed.
- Pre-storm prep guidance has been distributed to local governments and all hazardous waste, drinking water and wastewater facilities.
- DEP has issued an Emergency Final Order which authorizes repairs, replacement, restoration, and certain other measures due to impacts from Hurricane Dorian.
- State Parks Field staff are continuing their efforts to prepare parks for potential closures statewide.
- DEP has activated StormTracker which is an online reporting tool that tracks drinking water and wastewater facility status and needs as a result of storm impacts.
- DEP is monitoring generator requests for post-storm impacts.
- Four (4) Hazardous Area Response Teams (HARTs ) are on-call and ready to deploy.
- Sixteen (16) strike teams have been identified for park cleanup deployment and are ready with equipment and staff.
- Dune fortification in St. Johns County and Flagler counties is currently suspended until post-storm.
- DEP submitted a federal resource request for coastal engineers.
BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY
- Uber is offering rides to those needing transportation to a shelter. Use code DORIANRELIEF in the app, request, and select any of the Florida evacuation shelters listed as your destination. Shelters can be found at www.floridadisaster.org/info.
- In response to Hurricane Dorian, Airbnb hosts across Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Alabama are offering free places to stay to evacuees and/or relief workers (paid or volunteer) between August 31 and September 16 through the Open Homes program. Visit the following link to find temporary no-cost accommodations: https://www.airbnb.com/dorianmainland.
- The US Chamber of Commerce has activated the Disaster Help Desk at 1-888-692-4943 for businesses who may have questions before and after a storm.
- The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) and Florida Retail Federation, and VISIT FLORIDA, in coordination with the Department of Economic Opportunity, have representatives in the State Emergency Operations Center providing information and coordination for lodging and resources to support first responders, utility workers and emergency management professionals responding to Hurricane Dorian.
- The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) is encouraging lodging members to register for FEMA’s Transitional Shelter Assistance program, to relax cancellation policies and to relax pet policies for evacuees.
- FRLA is partnering with the American Hotel and Lodging Association and the Asian American Hotel Owners Association to spread the word about price gouging to all Florida lodging establishments.
- The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) continues to encourage businesses to visit www.FloridaDisaster.biz for disaster preparedness tips and register to receive updates as the storm progresses.
- Following the storm, DEO is encouraging businesses to complete the Business Damage Assessment Survey. To access the business survey, please click HERE and select “Hurricane Dorian” from the drop-down menu. Response to the damage assessment is not an application for assistance and information provided will be shared with various state and local agencies to execute appropriate relief programs. For additional assistance, businesses can call the private sector disaster recovery line at (850) 815-4925.
- DEO is extending the deadline for local governments to submit applications for the $85 million Rebuild Florida Infrastructure Repair Program.
- VISIT FLORIDA is constantly updating the emergency response website Florida Now. This includes encouraging Floridians with plans to return to Florida’s East Coast from Labor Day vacation to extend their time out of the area or to go to Northwest Florida, which is not in Hurricane Dorian’s forecast cone.
- Through VISIT FLORIDA’s partnership with Expedia, the Emergency Accommodations Module has also been activated at www.expedia.com/florida. This tool provides travelers with real-time information on accommodations availability throughout Florida and neighboring states.
- VISIT FLORIDA sent a targeted Facebook post to domestic and international visitors currently traveling in Florida advising them of Hurricane Dorian and urging them to take the necessary precautions. The post drives recipients to Floridadiaster.org/info. This message reached an estimated 420,000 Florida visitors on Facebook.
- The Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) offers a Hurricane Guide with information about hurricane preparedness, what to do as a storm approaches, disaster recovery, and helpful hurricane-related resources. DBPR has shared the Guide on social media and it is available at http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/documents/HurricaneGuide_web.pdf.
- The Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) has activated a consolidated hurricane information webpage for updates regarding the status of department operations and actions of the agency related to license processes, compliance deadlines, board meetings, and related matters of interest for regulated license holders. Click here: http://www.myfloridalicense.com/DBPR/Hurricane/.
- Secretary Beshears has ordered the suspension and tolling of time requirements, notice requirements, and deadlines applicable to certain final orders, notices of intended agency action, and pending applications for permits, licenses, rates or other approvals. This suspension will continue through September 30, 2019, unless extended by subsequent order. Review DBPR Emergency Order 2019-01 for more information.
- DBPR’s Division of Drugs, Devices, and Cosmetics has communicated with all licensed medical gas wholesalers to clarify the options afforded under the state of emergency that will enable the direct supply of oxygen from the wholesaler to points of need at emergency shelters. Division staff are prepared to assist with connecting emergency shelter operations with available supplies of oxygen as needed.
- DBPR’s Division of Hotels & Restaurants has identified and prepared sanitation and safety specialists to implement protocols for disaster inspections at licensed facilities in the immediate post-impact response phase of this emergency.
- DBPR’s Division of Regulation has identified and prepared a team of field investigators to support preliminary damage assessment measures in the immediate post-impact response phase of this emergency.
- DBPR has suspended the existing occupational license renewal deadline of September 3rd through September 30th.
- Anheuser-Busch is delivering over 100,000 cans of emergency drinking water to Florida.
- The Florida Department of Education (FDOE) will be posting up-to-date information regarding school closures at www.fldoe.org/hurricaneinfo.
- The following school districts have announced closures:
- Baker County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Bradford County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Brevard County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Broward County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Citrus County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Collier County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Clay County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019 through Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Duval County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019 through Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- FAU Lab will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Flagler County will be closed Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Florida School for the Deaf and Blind is closed until further notice.
- Glades County will be closed until further notice.
- Hardee County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Highlands County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Hillsborough County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Indian River County will be closed through Thursday, September 5, 2019 and reopening Friday, September 6, 2019
- Lake County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Marion County will be closed through Friday, September 6, 2019.
- Martin County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019. Reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Miami-Dade County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Nassau County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Orange County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Osceola County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Pasco County will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Palm Beach County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019 and reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Pinellas County will reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Polk County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Putnam County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Seminole County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- St. Johns County will be closed through Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- St. Lucie County will be closed through Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- UF Lab School will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Union County will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019. Reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Volusia County will be closed through Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- The following state colleges and universities have announced closures:
- Broward College, all campuses and partnership centers will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- College of Central Florida will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Daytona State College will remain closed until further notice.
- Eastern Florida State College will be reopening Monday, September 9, 2019.
- Florida Gateway College will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Florida Southwestern State College will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Florida State College at Jacksonville will be reopening Friday, September 6, 2019.
- Hillsborough Community College will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Indian River State College will be closed until further notice.
- Lake-Sumter State College will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Miami Dade College will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Palm Beach State College will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Pasco-Hernando State College will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Polk State College will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- Santa Fe College will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Seminole State College of Florida will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- South Florida State College will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- St. John’s River State College will be closed through Friday, September 6, 2019. Reopening Monday, September 9, 2019.
- St. Petersburg College will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- The College of the Florida Keys will be reopening Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- Valencia College will be reopening Friday, September 6, 2019.
- Florida A&M University satellite campus (Jacksonville) will be closed September 4, 2019.
- Florida Atlantic University will be reopening Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- New College of Florida will be closed Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- University of Central Florida will be closed through Thursday, September 5, 2019.
- University of North Florida will be closed through Wednesday, September 4, 2019.
- The following Division of Blind Services (DBS) and Division of Vocal Rehabilitation (DVR) have announced closures:
- Broward (DVR) 1400 West Commercial Blvd., Ft. Lauderdale
- Broward (DVR) 2825 North University Drive, Coral Springs
- Broward (DVR) 7550 Davie Road Ext., Hollywood
- Broward (DVR) 7771 W. Oakland Park Blvd., Sunrise
- Clay (DVR): 330 Crossing Blvd, Orange Park
- Hendry (DVR) 825 E. Cowboy Way, Labelle
- Highlands (DVR): 3107 Medical Way, Sebring
- Indian River (DVR): 6480 20th Street, Vero Beach
- Lake (DVR): 8112 Centralia Court, Lake
- Martin (DVR): 2223 S. Kanner Highway, Stuart- closed 9/3/2019
- Orange (DVR): 3191 & 3555 Maguire Blvd., Orlando
- Orange (DBS): 6350 Old Cheney Highway, Orlando
- Orange (DVR): 12200 West Colonial Drive, Winter Garden
- Orange (DBS): 400 West Robinson Street, Orlando
- Orange (DVR): 1555 Semoran Blvd, Orlando
- Palm Beach (DVR): 902 Cilnt Moore Road, Boca Raton
- Palm Beach (DVR): 6803 Lake Worth Road, Greenacres
- Palm Beach (DVR): 11079 South Main Street, Belle Glade
- Palm Beach (DVR/DBS): 400 N. Congress Avenue, West Palm Beach
- Polk (DVR): 500 East Lake Howard Drive, Winter Haven- tentative reopen 9/5/2019
- Polk (DBS): 402 S. Kentucky Avenue, Lakeland- tentative reopen 9/5/2019
- Polk (DVR): 200 North Kentucky Avenue, Lakeland- tentative reopen 9/5/2019
- Seminole (DVR): 1450 W. 1st Street, Sanford- tentative reopen 9/4/2019
- Seminole (DVR): 1555 State Road 436., Winter Park
- St. Johns (DVR): 25 Deltona Blvd., St. Augustine
- St. Lucie (DVR): 519 NW Lake Whitney Place
- Volusia (DVR): 2754 Enterprise Road, Orange City- tentative reopen 9/4/2019
- Volusia (DVR): 210 North Palmetto Drive, Daytona Beach- tentative reopen 9/5/2019
- Volusia (DBS): Daytona Campus, Daytona Beach- tentative reopen 9/5/2019
- Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran held a hurricane preparedness conference call with superintendents, and college presidents to receive an update on their hurricane preparedness plans.
- Many school boards are adjusting their meetings due to Hurricane Dorian. The Department of Education will work with each district on a case by case basis to meet statutory deadlines.
- Florida’s 28 colleges are now serving as fuel staging locations for first responders, including highway patrol, EMS, Sheriffs’ offices, etc.
- DMS’ Division of State Group Insurance, has arranged for early prescription renewals for members of the state group insurance program.
- The Office of Insurance Regulation’s Incident Management Team is fully activated and has representatives at the State Emergency Operations Center in Tallahassee.
- OIR team members will be actively working throughout the storm and beyond with consumer advocates, industry stakeholders and entities licensed under OIR’s regulatory authority.
- In accordance with the Governor’s Executive Order, OIR has notified all health insurers, managed care organizations and other health entities of their statutory obligation to allow for early prescription refills during a state of emergency here.
- Governor DeSantis activated the Florida Disaster Fund, Florida’s official private fund established to assist Florida’s communities as they respond to and recover during times of emergency or disaster. Individuals who are interested in supporting may visit www.volunteerflorida.org or text DISASTER to 20222 to make a $10 contribution.
- Volunteer Florida is coordinating with the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and FEMA to bring up to 100 AmeriCorps members to Florida to support response and recovery efforts.
- Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members are assisting communities as they prepare for storm conditions, including filling sandbags and contacting residents the vulnerable population lists.
- Volunteer Florida is coordinating with state and local emergency management officials and partners to preposition resources.
- Crisis Cleanup has opened their Home Cleanup Hotline (844-965-1386) to help individuals who experience damage to their homes and property.
- The Salvation Army has 30 mobile feeding units on standby. Each mobile kitchen is prepared to serve 500-1,500 meals per day.
- The Salvation Army has a standby commitment with Florida Southern Baptist for up to four field kitchens. These kitchens can provide 10,000 to 20,000 meals per day each that would be distributed through The Salvation Army’s mobile canteens. Sites have been identified at existing Baptist Church locations on the east coast from Palm Beach County to Duval County.
- Feeding Florida is coordinating with local food banks to ensure that there is food and water across the state.
- To assist blood centers in Florida, The American Red Cross sent approximately 350 blood products to ensure that patients have access to life saving blood, as the storm has prevented many from giving.
- The American Red Cross has 934 volunteers and 16 emergency response vehicles (ERVs) in the field staged for feeding and bulk distribution. There are an additional 67 ERVs standing by along with 55 rental vehicles and 101 tractor trailers (and 22 in route) carrying bulk supplies.
- The American Red Cross is working to support local Emergency Operation Centers and shelters with ARC liaisons.
- The American Red Cross Safe and Well program has been activated. More information can be found on www.redcross.org
- The American Red Cross Disaster Response Headquarters in Orlando is fully operational.
- Team Rubicon is prepositioning volunteers for deployment.
- Florida Baptist Disaster Relief has two kitchens that have a 32,000 meal capacity per day. They are also working with partners to preposition additional kitchens that have the capacity to prepare 180,000 meals per day. Additionally, 40+ cleanup and recover teams have populated and are building rosters for pre-staging/deployment.
- SBP is readying deployment teams that can be sent to impacted areas as needed.
- Farm Share is preparing relief items that can be sent to impacted communities as needed.
- Save the Children has an emergency team in Florida and plans to deploy to communities of worst impact and worst poverty/greatest need.
- Convoy of Hope has staff and supplies pre-positioned in Florida.
- Individuals who are interested in volunteering after the storm are encouraged to visit www.volunteerflorida.org where they may register to become a volunteer and search for volunteer opportunities. Volunteers should affiliate with an organization before deploying. Volunteers should not self-deploy.
- Florida Department of Corrections (FDC) Secretary Mark Inch, and his leadership team, are in close contact with the statewide EOC, and state and local law enforcement. Emergency planning is on track.
- Evacuation determinations are made in the best interest of the public, staff and inmate safety. Two main correctional institutions and multiple satellite facilities, community work release centers and work camps were evacuated in an abundance of caution. Approximately, 4,407 inmates have been evacuated or relocated to facilities better equipped to weather the impacts of the storm.
- FDC is taking proactive steps to ensure institutions are prepared for the storm and ensure inmate safety is not compromised. Food and water inventories have been evaluated at each facility and additional supplies have been ordered for facilities in the path of the storm. Fuel supplies at institutions have been checked in anticipation of generator use. All facilities have a generator in the event commercial power is lost.
- You can search for an inmate by utilizing the offender search on FDC’s website: http://www.dc.state.fl.us/OffenderSearch/Search.aspx.
- Many counties along Florida’s East Coast have announced the closing of local courts. For the latest on court closures, visit the Emergency Information page of the Florida Supreme Court’s website: www.floridasupremecourt.org/Emergency.
STATE EMERGENCY OPERATION CENTER / CONTACTS
- The State Emergency Operations Center has activated to a Level 1.
- The State Assistance Information Line (SAIL) contact number: 1-800-342-3557.
- The State Emergency Operations Center Media Line: 850-921-0217.
- Follow @FLSERT and @GovRonDeSantis on Twitter for live updates on Hurricane Dorian.
- Visit http://www.floridadisaster.org/info to find information on emergency preparedness, shelters, road closures and evacuation routes.