Preparations underway for arrival of Hurricane Ian

People on the Suncoast are using this last little bit of good weather to prepare their houses and stock up for the potentially life-threatening conditions.
Published: Sep. 26, 2022 at 10:30 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

(WGGB/WSHM) - As Hurricane Ian barrels towards western Cuba, Florida residents are preparing for its impacts. The category two hurricane is expected to strengthen and make landfall in the Sunshine State later this week.

People on the Suncoast are using this last little bit of good weather to prepare their houses and stock up for the potentially life-threatening conditions.

Florida residents are busy filling bags of sand as Hurricane Ian approaches.

“Be prepared and just get ready,” said Alex Kuizon of Holmes Beach, Florida. “This is a serious hurricane coming, so just be ready and be prepared.”

Many in southwestern part of the state are now being ordered to evacuate their homes as officials warn of the potentially life-threatening surge.

“This could be the storm that we’ve hoped would never come to our shores,” said St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch.

Store shelves were left bare as people tried to stock up on needed items, prompting some to limit resources to one per customer.

U-Haul told Western Mass News that it is offering 30 days of free storage and u-box container usage at 43 Florida facilities to residents who may be impacted by Ian.

Closer to home at Bradley international airport, flights are still making their way in and out of the Sunshine State. The airport reported zero cancellations or delays impacting Florida travelers, but passengers said that flights arriving from Tampa were packed.

“I think people are pretty chill, but I think they realize if they wait until tomorrow, they’re not getting out, or the day after, so that’s why they’re like, ‘Let’s try to get out a day or two earlier so we can get back home,’” said traveler Emily Bernard.

Many airlines are offering travel waivers in response to the hurricane.

Here in western Massachusetts, the Salvation Army told us that they have crews on standby, ready to respond in Florida.

“We have 37 mobile trucks prepared to deploy, as well as one field kitchen, that will mobilize immediately after the worst of the storm is over,” said Emily Mew, Deputy Director of Emergency Disaster Services Massachusetts Division. “Those canteen trucks can provide up to 1,500 meals a day to individuals and families who may not be able to cook or may have too much devastation around them to.”

Second Chance Animal Services in North Brookfield said that it is preparing to welcome cats evacuating a Florida shelter in the storm’s path. The nonprofit is expecting to meet ASPCA officials Tuesday morning at Worcester Regional Airport.

The cats will then be given any necessary veterinary care and complete their state mandated 48-hour quarantine so they can begin their search for a new home in Massachusetts.