Alachua County urges residents to use weekend to prepare for possible hurricane

File photo of flooded roads in Alachua County. (ACSO, Alachua County Sheriff's Office)

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. – Alachua County officials issued a news release Saturday warning residents that while the path of Tropical Storm Ian remains uncertain, now is the time to prepare.

Ian is projected to make landfall anywhere from the Panhandle to the Keys as a possible major hurricane, but no matter where the storm makes landfall, it could affect Alachua County next week, officials warned.

They urged residents to take the weekend to prepare, including doing things like trimming tree branches, securing lawn furniture, storing toys, tools, and grills, cleaning gutters, and removing obstructions around windows can help prepare your home for winds and heavy rainfall.

“As a community, we are stronger than the individual,” said Alachua County Emergency Manager Jen Grice. “We encourage all of our residents to reach out to their friends, families, and neighbors to provide help and encouragement to those that may have a more difficult time getting prepared. Whole community preparedness ensures that if disaster does strike, we will be able to bounce back quicker and stronger.”

The “Cone of Uncertainty” is a tool and graphic that is most commonly used, but there is still a great deal of confusion about what it actually means and how to interpret it properly. Alachua County urged residents to watch a 3-minute video produced by the NOAA NWS National Hurricane Center that explains exactly how to understand the “Cone.”

About the Author:

A Jacksonville native and proud University of North Florida alum, Francine Frazier has been with News4Jax since 2014 after spending nine years at The Florida Times-Union.