ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – Strong wind gusts and water were moving into roadways in downtown St. Augustine on Thursday morning as Ian was downgraded to a tropical storm.
As News4JAX traveled along I-95 South, crews witnessed a few power outages. FPL reported, over 5,000 people were without power in the county as of 4 a.m.
In downtown St. Augustine, winds were about 24 mph and the water was crashing against the seawall causing some of the water to push into the roadway along A1A near the Bridge of Lions.
St. Johns County officials said early Wednesday evening that Ian is expected to bring worse flooding and winds than initially anticipated.
A flood advisory was issued for Flagler and St. Johns counties Thursday morning. The advisory went into effect around 4:30 a.m. and was set to expire at 8 a.m.
The National Weather Service said about 2 to 4 inches of rain have fallen in the counties so far and another 1 to 3 inches are possible.
Mandatory evacuations were underway for roughly 180,000 people in St. Johns County as Hurricane Ian approaches. People living near water are advised to go to higher ground and leave their homes.
About 180,000 residents in evacuation Zones A and B, as well as Zone F south of County Road 214, were asked to leave and get to a safe place on higher ground. The zones being asked to evacuate include all of the City of St. Augustine, as well as areas near the coastline and the St. Johns River.
Hurricane Ian Press Conference - September 27, 2022Posted by St. Johns County Emergency Management on Tuesday, September 27, 2022
Zone maps can be found on the county website.
County shelters were opened on Wednesday.
The county is prepared to open additional shelters as needed. The following shelters are currently open to the public:
- Pacetti Bay Middle School, 245 Meadowlark Lane (Special needs)
- Southwoods Elementary, 4750 State Road 206 (Pet-friendly)
- Pedro Menendez High School, 600 State Road 206 West (General population)