NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. (WLFA) — Pasco County is under a local state of emergency ahead of Nicole. There is a potential for a storm surge, so residents have been picking up sandbags to protect their homes.

“You never know at first Ian was going to hit us and then it turned so it’s unpredictable,” said Jeanne Brown, New Port Richey resident.

Sand is available at:

The bags will be provided, but you will have to bring your own shovels to fill the bags.

“We have a lagoon in our backyard that comes in and goes out with the tide,” said John Ross, Port Richey resident.

Emergency management director, Andrew Fossa, said on Wednesday night residents will be feeling the strong rain bands with winds up to 50 miles per hour.

“The main concern for us to be in this time tomorrow is going to be winds and the possibility of a surge tomorrow,” he said.

Pasco County is opening a shelter at the Mike Fasano Regional Hurricane Shelter, located at 11161 Denton Avenue in Hudson.  The shelter will open Wednesday, November 9, at 7 p.m. 

“Please don’t go into flood waters, make sure make sure all loose debris objects around your house have been put away,” Fossa said.