2017 Florida hurricane season

WLRN News and its partners have reporters on the ground throughout the islands. We will be posting their updates as they come in. 

Screenshot of MyPasco app.

Pasco County residents can now take photos of Hurricane Irma damage on their property and upload them to the free “MyPasco” app.

Those photos will be plotted on a map to help with damage assessment.

Hillsborough County Schools

Many schools in the Tampa Bay area are just like residences -- no power.  That means none of the schools will be open Tuesday. Some will be closed even longer.

Share Your Irma Story

Sep 11, 2017
Mary Shedden / WUSF Public Media

WUSF News is gathering stories from Tampa Bay area residents who weathered Hurricane Irma We’d like to hear from you. You can reach us in several ways:

  • Reach us on Facebook or on twitter @wusf
  • Email: news@wusfnews.org with your name, location and your situation.
  • Leave us a voice mail on our Florida Matters phone line by calling: 813-396-WUSF.

A massive but weakened Hurricane Irma zeroed in on the Tampa Bay region early Monday after hammering much of Florida with roof-ripping winds, gushing floodwaters and widespread power outages.

Pinellas County Sheriff's Office

Even before the bands of Hurricane Irma swept through Pinellas County, emergency officials were preparing for the aftermath.

They told people who've left the county not to rush back as soon as the storm has passed - because they won't be allowed back in.

Too much water is typically the problem when storms blow through Tampa Bay. But for a few brief hours Sunday, the bay's fortunes were reversed as Hurricane Irma's counterclockwise winds blew the water out.

Hurricane Irma is having an impact on the entire Tampa Bay area. WUSF has reporters spread out across the region. This county-by-county breakdown will be updated continuously as the storm passes.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

Starting at 6 p.m. Sunday, all Tampa residents are under a mandatory curfew, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn announced during a late morning news conference carried live on Facebook.

He said the curfew will be indefinite or until a neighborhood is deemed safe from downed power lines, overturned trees and storm debris.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

It seemed an obvious solution to Michael Oded, who was asked at the last minute Friday to get sandbags and secure his friend’s Davis Islands home from flooding.

Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

Hurricane Irma's projected path is moving west and state leaders are urging Floridians to prepare for the worst.

Evacuation orders have been issued and shelters are open.  

Here's a list of shelters, evacuation zones and other need-to-know information as Hurricane Irma approaches: 

SHELTERS

Pinellas County

Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

A massive but weakened Hurricane Irma zeroed in on the Tampa Bay region early Monday after hammering much of Florida with roof-ripping winds, gushing floodwaters and widespread power outages.

WUSF Public Media

Access to the Pinellas County barrier islands had already been restricted since Friday morning to residents, business owners and employees in advance of Hurricane Irma. 

Starting Sunday at 6 a.m., no one will be allowed in - even if they live there. 

Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

Hurricane Irma's leading edges whipped palm trees and kicked up the surf as the storm spun toward Florida with 120 mph winds Saturday on a projected new track that could put Tampa — not Miami — in the crosshairs.

Tampa has not taken a direct hit from a major hurricane in nearly a century.

Updated at 2:23 a.m. ET on Sunday

After battering Cuba on Saturday morning, the eye of Hurricane Irma has its sights set on Florida as a Category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center early Sunday. The NHC's latest forecast shows the storm's center shifting west from Miami, and even Tampa, to target St. Petersburg.

Florida braces for direct hit

Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

The biggest danger to life and property from Hurricane Irma could come from storm surge that forces seawater inland, which could topple houses, isolate residents who don't evacuate and make drowning an imminent threat, the National Hurricane Center is warning.

Florida Public Radio Emergency Network

The National Hurricane Center says it's looking more likely that the eye of powerful Hurricane Irma will strike the Keys, southwestern Florida and the Tampa Bay region starting Sunday. But that doesn't mean Miami area is in the clear. It's not.

Updated at 6 a.m. ET Saturday

Hurricane Irma is again a Category 4 storm as it slowly moves along the Cuban coast. The storm made landfall on the Camaguey archipelago of Cuba late Friday, according to the National Hurricane Center. As of 5 a.m. Saturday, the hurricane's center was just off the northern coast near central Cuba. The report puts Irma's traveling speed at 12 mph, about 245 miles south-southeast of Miami.

About 5.6 million people in Florida have been ordered to evacuate; forecasters expect the hurricane to hit Florida early Sunday morning.

Lake Okeechobee is currently at 13.7 feet, which is a slight increase over the course of the week, despite days of water releases into the estuaries surrounding the lake.

While the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers does not at this point believe the aging Hoover Dike is at risk of breach, there are three places where they expect significant amount of water to splash over and potentially stream over the top of those sites.

The Florida Department Of Corrections has started evacuating some of their smaller facilities in South Florida.

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