St. Lucie County Hurricane Resources

St. Lucie County hurricane resources are available to provide residents with the tools they need to survive hurricane season. When Hurricane Idalia made its way toward northern Florida in 2023, many St. Lucie County residents also prepared for the storm, not knowing if it could head their way. Many experts believe the 2024 Florida hurricane season could be highly active, so St. Lucie County locals must be ready for what could come.

Fortunately, St. Lucie County will give different warnings before a storm reaches the shore. The county may issue a hurricane watch or hurricane warning. Hurricane or tropical storm watches mean hurricane conditions are possible within two days. However, a hurricane or tropical storm warning means hurricane conditions could come within 36 hours. The 36 and 48-hour time frames also apply to storm surge watches and warnings. Below are several St. Lucie County hurricane resources that can help you get through the 2024 Florida hurricane season.

hurricane florida

The Official St. Lucie County Hurricane 2024 Preparedness Checklist

St. Lucie County officials urge locals to have a hurricane emergency kit checklist. The checklist includes at least one gallon of drinking water per person for at least a week. Extra water will help with personal hygiene and food preparation. You should also have at least three days of food, but more if possible.

Things like toilet paper, paper towels, extra bedding, a first aid kit, and hand sanitizer can make managing power outages easier. Plastic trash bags could come in handy to prevent water from getting into items if flooding occurs. St. Lucie County also encourages residents to have books, games, and toys to provide comfort and entertainment during the storm.

Power outages during hurricanes are very common. If the power goes out, you’ll need a flashlight with extra batteries and extra charcoal or propane for outdoor cooking. Banks and ATMs might be closed after the hurricane is over, so having cash on hand is necessary.

St. Lucie County Urges Residents to Monitor Hurricane Elsa

Common Mistakes People Make During a Hurricane

According to St Lucie County, people make several mistakes when facing a hurricane warning. Below are several mistakes that people commonly make.

Focusing too much on the Hurricane’s Track

Even if an area is outside the storm’s forecast, it’s still possible to be impacted by a storm and suffer damage. Areas that don’t receive a direct hit from a hurricane must still be cautious and make preparations.

Underestimating a Hurricane’s Strength

Hurricanes are categorized by wind strength; however, other elements of the storm can make them dangerous. Storm surges, flooding, and tornadoes can cause catastrophic damage. For example, in 2005, Hurricane Katrina caused immense devastation and high casualties despite being a category three. Smaller storms can still cause trouble.

Opening Windows During a Storm

A myth has circulated that people should open windows to let air pass through and ventilate a home during a hurricane. The opposite is true. A home must be tightly sealed during a hurricane. Nothing should be allowed in or out of the house.

Driving through Standing Water after a Hurricane

Once the storm is over, it’s essential to be extra careful on the roads. Even if the roads look drivable, beware of possible damage and look out for standing water. Many people see standing water and believe they can confidently drive through a partially flooded road. It’s a common mistake to misjudge the depth of the water and damage the car. Turn the car around if you encounter a flooded road.

Going Outside During the Eye of the Storm

The eye of a hurricane can be very peaceful and deceptive. The eye of the storm can last minutes or even hours, depending on the size of the eye. When the eye lasts for a lengthy period, it may seem safe to go outside and check on property damage. Even if it feels like you have time to go outside, it can be very dangerous. Stay indoors.

florida hurricane

How to Call for Help in St. Lucie County

St. Lucie County has an emergency information line for people who need help. You should call the non-emergency information line if there is no immediate threat to life or property. The emergency information line is ideal for situations where police, fire, and ambulance do not need to respond.

The St. Lucie County emergency information line can answer questions, take reports, and assist with requests. The information line can be reached by calling  772-460-4357 or 772-460-HELP. Locals can also sign up for the Alert St. Lucie emergency notification system. The system informs people about incidents that could impact their safety in real-time. Locals can also register online at www.stlucieco.gov/alert.

How to Handle Loss of Power in St. Lucie County

When the power goes out, there are a few things that you should do. First, turn off or unplug your appliances. Unplugging electronics and appliances can help you protect your property. When the power comes back, surges could damage large appliances and sensitive equipment. If you don’t plan to unplug things, at the very least, make sure things are turned off. If everything in your home is switched on when the power returns, the surge and strain could trip your breakers.

Second, report the outage to Florida Power and Light. To report the outage, call 800-4-OUTAGE. Many people assume that neighbors will contact utility companies during a power outage; however, the company must receive information from each person experiencing the outage.

Important Websites & Communication for St. Lucie County Residents

Although social media can be a helpful source of information during a hurricane, in some cases, social media reports are only sometimes reliable. Getting information from multiple sources, including public news channels, radio stations, and social media, is vital. Below are several channels that will broadcast helpful information during a storm and keep residents updated.

  • SLCTV Comcast Channel 28
  • WPTV NBC Channel 5
  • WPEC CBS Channel 12
  • WPBF ABC Channel 25
  • WFLX FOX Channel 29
  • Radio WQCS – 88.9 FM

Treasure Coast Hurricane

St Lucie County Recommendations for Getting Through the Hurricane

St Lucie County recommends several things to keep residents safe during a storm. First, local officials ask that residents turn on a TV or radio and listen for updates and possible instructions. Second, setting the fridge and freezer to their coldest setting is smart. In the event you lose power, your food will stay fresher longer. Drinking water containers should all be filled, and a clean bathtub should also be filled with water, which could come in handy for flushing the toilet.

Residents can place towels along windowsills and the bottom of doors if flooding occurs to absorb water and lessen the damage. Mops, buckets, and sponges can also come in handy. Finally, only use the telephone for emergencies. A jammed phone line could interfere with emergency calls to the police or emergency medical services.

What is the Difference Between Voluntary and Mandatory Evacuation?

In the event of a severe storm that could produce catastrophic damage, St. Lucie County may issue evacuation orders. There are two types of evacuation orders: voluntary and mandatory. A voluntary evacuation means that residents are encouraged to leave the area or, at the very least, prepare for mandatory evacuation. A mandatory evacuation means that local officials believe that conditions are dangerous enough to endanger the lives of residents, and leaving is required. Evacuation orders are issued to protect residents.

Emergency Shelters in St. Lucie County

St. Lucie County highly recommends staying with family or friends outside the evacuation zone. If that’s not an option, shelters are available to those in need. A shelter can provide a safe refuge during a hurricane. Most shelters in St. Lucie County are located in schools, and many elementary and high schools are opened as shelters during severe hurricanes.

Although shelters are stocked with necessities such as food, water, and a warm, dry place to sleep, a shelter doesn’t offer the same convenience or comfort as a friend or family member’s home or a hotel. Shelters can be noisy and crowded and have very little privacy.

Public Information Lines Open for Hurricane

Special medical needs shelters are also available in St. Lucie County. The special medical needs shelter is at the Havert L. Fenn Center at 2000 Virginia Ave. in Fort Pierce, Florida. This shelter is specifically for people with medical conditions that don’t require hospitalization. For example, people visiting the shelter may depend on health professionals to administer injectable or heavy doses of medication, require dress changes by a healthcare professional, or need assistance with dialysis, catheters, ostomy management, or oxygen therapy. The special medical needs shelter is also for people with cognitive impairments like dementia or Alzheimer’s. Registration is recommended for special medical needs shelters so staff can get the proper equipment before arrival.

Suppose you have pets and plan to use a shelter during an evacuation. In that case, it’s important to register your pet at the St. Lucie County government website under the pet shelter registration tab. Pet owners must also provide proof of immunization records when bringing a pet to the shelter. St. Lucie County can help locals with transportation to an emergency shelter if needed. If you need transportation to a shelter, call  772-462-1778 and press 1 to make a reservation. Registration is not required to go to a primary shelter. For shelter openings, residents should contact 772-460-HELP.

Picture of TreasureCoast

TreasureCoast

Share

Post Info

  • Posted 2 weeks ago

Read More

The Insider's Guide to Florida's Treasure Coast

Subscribe

Receive the latest tips, information, & news!