NORTH PORT, Fla. (WFLA) — The southernmost parts of the Tampa Bay area are expected to be the most impacted from what could become Tropical Storm Alex.
Residents in North Port told 8 On Your Side their greatest concern this hurricane season is flooding.
Last July, Elsa brought heavy flooding to the city, leaving some parts several feet under water. Some residents in the North Port Estates neighborhood had to use kayaks and boats to get from their driveways to dry land.
Those memories remain fresh in the mind of many homeowners as the season’s first storm approaches Florida.
“When a storm comes through, the first thought is flooding,” Estates resident John Favere said. “The unknown if we get back to back storms, that is a huge problem here in the Estates area.”
City public works officials told 8 On Your Side the good news is water levels in the Myakkahatchee Creek and the city’s storm water canals remain low.
“It’s always good to take it seriously and be prepped just in case, but at this point our waterways are low because we are just coming out of dry season,” North Port Community Outreach Coordinator for Public Works Billy Carlson said. “We don’t see a lot to panic about with this storm, but obviously we’re going to keep an eye on things.”
Carlson said residents have been inquiring about sandbags ahead of the storm. However, at this point in time the city is not providing sandbags to the public.
Staff worked to clear storm water grates and outlets as part of routine maintenance Friday and in preparation for the storm.
City officials told 8 On Your Side they’re closely monitoring the storm as well as rainfall totals and are ready to pivot as needed.