Hurricane Irma: County-by-county updates on storm preparations

TAMPA BAY (WFLA) — Updates are coming in fast on Hurricane Irma and how Florida and the Tampa Bay area is preparing. Here’s the latest information broken down by county.


  • 3:35 p.m.:  City of Tampa Solid Waste collection service will go on as scheduled on Thursday, September 7 and Friday, September 8. The McKay Bay Waste to Energy Facility is also expected to maintain normal operating hours through Friday, September 8 and so will residential and commercial cart and container deliveries. Customers should expect delays through the remainder of the week. Commercial service may be canceled on Saturday, September 9 and Sunday, September 10. The McKay Bay Waste to Energy Facility may also be closed on Saturday, September 9.
  • 12:35 p.m.:  KC-135s from the 6th Air Mobility Wing on MacDill AFB are evacuating to McConnell AFB, Kansas, beginning Thursday, September 7, 2016.
  • 11:30 a.m.:  Hillsborough County declares local state of emergency.  The executive order allows the County Administrator to carry out all emergency responsibilities delegated by the EPG through Hillsborough County.  It also prevents local businesses, vendors, merchants and any other persons operating a retail business from charging more than the normal average retail price.
  • 11:15 a.m.:  Mayor Bob Buckhorn announced a new hotline for Tampa residents.  Tampa residents with questions about resources on Irma preparedness should call (844)-852-8889.  You can also stay informed by following all accounts on social: @CityofTampa, @AlertTampa, @BobBuckhorn and subscrbing to alerts at
  • 7 a.m.: The Hillsborough County Emergency Operations Center has resumed activation of its major operations.  Hillsborough County and partner agencies are monitoring Hurricane Irma and coordinating resources.  Residents needing additional information can call the County’s Customer Service line at (813) 272-5900.
  • 7 p.m. Wednesday: Port Tampa Bay remains open and busy. The cranes are currently operating, loading and unloading containers. They are scheduled to continue working unless Port Tampa Bay receives notice from the United States Coast Guard to terminate operations.
  • 6 p.m. Wednesday: As Hurricane Irma continues to develop in the Atlantic Ocean, Coast Guard officials in the Tampa Bay area are encouraging the maritime community and boating public to monitor Irma’s progress and make early preparations to protect themselves and their boats.


  • 12:00 p.m.: Manatee County Area Transit (MCAT) services, including fixed-route buses, the Anna Maria Island Trolley, and the Longboat Key Shuttle, will be suspended beginning Friday, September 8. Handy Bus services will also be suspended, except for scheduled dialysis trips on Friday and Saturday. No new reservations will be taken for Monday or Tuesday.
  • 11:25 a.m.:  All carriers at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport are operating as scheduled on Thursday.  American Airlines canceled flights between 12:00 p.m. Saturday and 11:00 a.m. Monday.  Elite Airways canceled flights on Sunday.  Delta Airlines, Air Canada and Jetblue Airways have not made announcements
  • 9:45 a.m.:  Manatee County issues voluntary evacuation for low lying areas and mobile home residents
  • 4:30 p.m. Wednesday: Fort Hamer Bridge will open temporarily to accommodate traffic related to the storm at 6 a.m. on Friday. The bridge is safe for vehicle traffic but will close Tuesday, Sept. 12 to complete the project.


  • 2:49 p.m.:   Residental curbside trash and recycling collection services are no longer suspended.  Licensed haulers will pick up trash and recycling on regularly-scheduled routes Friday, September 8 and Saturday, September 9. Residents should secure all trash and recycling bins following Saturday’s pick-up service.
  • 12:25 p.m.:  Pasco County is opening hurricane shelters for residents who would like to leave their home ahead of Hurricane Irma. The following shelters will open Friday, September 8 at 11 a.m. giving residents a place to ride out the storm:
    -Fivay High School, 12115 Chicago Ave, Hudson
    -Hudson River Ridge Middle/High School, 11646 Town Center Rd., New Port Richey
    -Sunlake High School, 3023 Sunlake Blvd., Land O Lakes
    -Wesley Chapel High School, 30651 Wells Rd., Wesley Chapel
    -Wiregrass Ranch High School, 2909 Mansfield Blvd., Wesley Chapel (pet-friendly)
  • 10:00 a.m.:  The West Pasco Government Center sandbag location at 7356 State Street in New Port Richey is now closed.
  • 5:50 p.m. Wednesday: Pasco County is suspending residential curbside trash and recycling collections at the end of the day on Thursday. There will be no collection on Friday and collection will remain suspended until further notice.


  • 4:45 p.m.:  The City of Largo will post specific storm updates and facility closures to and social media sites when possible.
  • 4:35 p.m.:  Sanitation services in St. Petersburg will continue as usual Friday, Sept. 8 and Saturday, Sept. 9. Brush sites will be closed Sunday, Sept. 10 and Monday, Sept. 11. There will be no trash or recycling pickup Monday, Sept. 11.
  • 4:00 p.m.:  Frontier Communications operations teams are postponing new installations and repair service orders in areas of Pinellas County that are under mandatory evacuation orders due to Hurricane Irma. However, service orders will continue as planned for areas in Pinellas County without mandatory evacuations.
  • 2:50 p.m.:  Pinellas County declares state of local emergency.  Mandatory evacuation orders for Level A residents (all mobile home parks included)start at 6 a.m. on Friday.  Shelters will open at noon.  Additional evacuations up to Level C may be ordered to start on Saturday.
    • Emergency shelters will open at noon on Friday. Open shelter locations will be as follows:
      -Tarpon Springs Middle School (501 N. Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs)
      -Palm Harbor University High School (1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor)
      -Dunedin Highland Middle School (70 Patricia Ave., Dunedin)*
      -Oak Grove Middle School (1370 S. Belcher Road, Clearwater)*
      -Largo High School (410 Missouri Ave., Largo)
      -Gibbs High School (850 34th St. South, St. Petersburg)
      -John Hopkins Middle School (701 16th St. South, St. Petersburg)*
  • 2:35 p.m.:  St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport will close Friday, September 8 and stay closed until further notice.
  • 12:45 p.m.:  Pier 60 will close at 10 p.m. Thursday night and stay closed until further notice.
  • 12:31 p.m.:  The City of Tarpon Springs has announced the following closings and cancellations:
    -Municipal Golf Course – Closed Sunday, September 10
    -Cycadia Cemetery – Closed Saturday, September 9 at close of business thru Sunday, September 10
    -Rotary Triathlon – Scheduled for Sunday, September 10 has been CANCELLED
    -Night in the Islands – Scheduled for Saturday, September 9 has been CANCELLED
    -Tarpon Springs Library – Closed Saturday, September 9 through Sunday, September 10
    -Chief Butcher Retirement Party – Scheduled for Saturday, September 9 at the Elks Club of Tarpon Springs has been CANCELLED to be rescheduled for a future date.
    -City Offices will remain open on Friday, September 8. We expect to revisit our schedule on Friday, September 8 and make further decisions on facility closings for Monday.
  • 12:31 p.m.:  Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) will suspend all public transit services on Sunday, September 10.  The following services will not run Sunday:
    -All PSTA Bus and Trolley Routes
    -Jolley Trolley
    -Downtown Looper
    -DART (Care Ride)
  • 12:19 p.m.:  The City of St. Petersburg has declared a state of emergency.  The motion gives the mayor special authority to take action in response to Hurricane Irma.
  • 11:30 a.m.: Pinellas County commissioners vote on issuing mandatory evacuation orders
  • 2:25 p.m. Wednesday: The City of Pinellas Park says despite county schools closing, these three recreation centers will remain open for youth with recreation cards from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.:
    • Broderick Recreation Center
    • Forbes Recreation Center
    • Youth Park Teen Center
  • 1:45 p.m Wednesday.: The Humane Society of Pinellas County is looking for fosters to help as they work to relocate all of their animals offsite ahead of Hurricane Irma.


  • 4 p.m. Wednesday: Polk County says shelters remain closed despite the announcement that classes at Polk County Public Schools are canceled on Friday.


  • 12:30 p.m.:  All Southwest Florida Water Management District offices will be closed on Friday, Sept. 8. The District will continue to monitor the progress of Hurricane Irma throughout the weekend to determine if future closings are necessary.
  • 3:30 p.m. Wednesday: The ACT test is being rescheduled at several test centers throughout Florida due to Hurricane Irma. A full list of centers that are rescheduling can be found here.
  • 3 p.m. Wednesday: Broward County, Collier County and Monroe County have issued evacuation orders
  • 2:15 p.m. Wednesday: The Florida Department of Transportation is suspending work operations in all active construction zones statewide that would impact lanes used by drivers for evacuations


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