TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Gov. Ron DeSantis has expanded the state of emergency to include 49 Florida counties ahead of Hurricane Idalia’s arrival.
250 Starlink internet devices have been activated and another 500 are “ready to go,” DeSantis said in a 6 p.m. news conference.
National Guardsmen from Tennessee and South Carolina are also assisting, he said. California is also sending a team to assist.
“This is crunch time right now,” DeSantis said.
Counties included in the order are:
- St. Johns
“You are going to see some nasty weather, so just be warned about that,” DeSantis said.
The storm is forecast to make landfall as a Category 3 hurricane on Florida’s Gulf coast on Wednesday morning.
Here’s when residents can expect to see tropical storm-force winds in the Tampa Bay area.
The Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Jared W. Perdue said tolls have been suspended in parts of Florida so residents can get to to their evacuation areas.
If you need guidance on how to prepare for a hurricane or tropical storm, visit floridadisaster.org/planprepare.