Gov. Scott Issues Updates on Hurricane Irma Response Efforts

Sep 12 • 279 Views • View Comments

Share Button

This morning, Governor Rick Scott joined Adjutant General of Florida Maj. Gen. Michael Calhoun, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry, and members of the National Guard on an aerial tour to assess damage from Hurricane Irma in Jacksonville. Over the past two days, Governor Scott has visited three shelters in Pensacola, Immokalee and Jacksonville. The Governor will continue to be in constant communication with state and local emergency management officials, city and county leaders, law enforcement and National Guard leaders, and utility officials as Hurricane Irma response continues. 



  • Flood warnings and rip current risks are in effect across the state. To see the most current advisories in your county, click HERE.


  • More than 400 shelters are open throughout Florida with a total population of more than 94,000 individuals. More than 80 special needs shelters are open with a total population of more than 17,00 individuals. This number is being updated throughout the day. Visit to find information on shelters in your area.
  • To find information about available shelter information by county, visit
  • FEMA is also hosting shelter information on its mobile app which can be found at
  • The state is fully committed to ensuring adequate food resources are available to residents impacted by Hurricane Irma, and are prioritizing these resources based on areas where landfall occurred first and based upon urgency of need. These areas include: Monroe, Charlotte, Collier, Lee, Sarasota, and shelters of last refuge. USDA Foods from the state inventory (405,000 meals) as well as inventory from the North Carolina Department of Agriculture (427,000 meals) are being staged for meal preparation. The state is also working to ensure ice is available for shelters, canteens, kitchens, and military support operations 


  • An additional 24 FWC officers will be deploying and a contingent of National Guard are arriving in Marathon in the Keys.
  • More than 200 FWC officers statewide, including partner agencies, are deployed in areas with resources such as trucks, coastal and river patrol boats, ATVs and shallow draft boats to respond to critical areas based on the storm’s path. FWC Special Operations Group (SOG) officers, National Guard members and an Urban Search and Rescue Team began rescue operations in the Keys yesterday.
  • FWC has more than 500 law enforcement vessels deployed throughout the state. FWC has three teams of 22 officers with 10 boats in Jacksonville and Northeast Florida conducting search and rescue.
  • FWC has sworn in more than 300 officers deployed from Georgia, Mississippi, Delaware, South Carolina, Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, and Texas.
  • The entire Florida Highway Patrol (FHP), approximately 1,700 troopers, is on 12-hour shifts, with the primary mission to assist emergency response.
  • The Florida Highway Patrol has 20 troopers dedicated to fuel escorts from Port of Jacksonville, Port of Tampa, Port Everglades and Port Canaveral to impacted areas as soon as ports reopen.
  • FHP is providing security escorts to 44 tractor trailers with relief supplies into Florida from the Georgia/Florida state line to Miami.
  • FHP is providing security escorts to 600 utility trucks into Florida from the Georgia/Florida line into impacted areas of Southwest Florida. In addition, FHP is providing a security escort to 11 Panama City utility vehicles.
  • 60 FHP troopers have been deployed to assist the Polk County Sheriff, 50 troopers have been deployed to assist the Collier County Sheriff and 20 troopers have been deployed to assist St. Johns County law enforcement.
  • FHP is providing a security escort to seven AT&T communication trucks to assist with communication coverage in Monroe County.
  • Despite closed state offices in Volusia Co., DHSMV staff is at Orange City & Daytona Motorist Services offices to offer Driver’s License and ID services.


  • The Florida National Guard has conducted hundreds of missions, including search and rescue and road and runway clearance across the state, especially in the Keys. The Guard will begin transitions from search and rescue missions to providing humanitarian assistance.
  • The Florida National Guard is actively coordinating a multi-service effort to conduct life-saving operations in the Florida Keys, including providing critical capabilities to include road and runway clearance to enable the delivery of life-saving supplies.
  • Aerial assessments by the Florida National Guard will continue across the state today.
  • The full spectrum of U.S. military has supported Hurricane Irma disaster relief efforts, which includes the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and the two amphibious ships USS Iwo Jima and USS New York, which are positioned to begin providing assistance as requested. 


  • The current power outage as of 9:00 a.m. is more than 5.6 million accounts. For a full breakdown, click HERE.
  • Do not try to handle downed power lines. Contact your local utility company to report it. 


  • The Florida Highway Patrol has 20 troopers dedicated to fuel escorts from Port of Jacksonville, Port of Tampa, Port Everglades and Port Canaveral to impacted areas as soon as ports reopen.
  • Port Everglades is open to traffic on the landside terminals. Fuel trucks are actively filling and leaving the terminals to refuel gas stations.  Port Everglades is expected to open to ships later today.
  • Port Canaveral has opened landside terminals for fuel trucks to fill and deliver. Port Canaveral is expected to open to ships today.
  • Port of Tampa has landslide terminals open and fuel trucks are actively filling and leaving the terminals to deliver gas to stations. Tankers will begin delivery this evening, with at least seven expected in the next 72 hours. Port Tampa is expected to open this afternoon.
  • This week, the Governor took the following actions to expedite fuel delivery to gas stations:
  • Directed the Florida Highway Patrol to escort fuel resupply trucks to gas stations;
  • Waived the tax on fuel entering the state;
  • Gov. Scott and executive office staff have held daily calls with all fuel supply stakeholders, including Florida Ports;
  • Following the Governor’s request, Vice President Pence announced that the federal government has waived the Jones Act upon Governor Scott’s request, which waives additional rules and regulations to allow more fuel to get to Florida fast. This waiver ensures that all options are available to distribute fuel to Florida. The last Jones Act waiver was issued in December 2012, for petroleum products to be delivered for relief assistance in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
  • Following the Governor’s request, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved an emergency fuel waiver which allows more fuel to quickly enter the state. For more information, please click HERE.
  • Requested ten states to join Florida in waiving weight and driver restrictions to move goods more quickly into the state, including fuel.


  • The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has completed damage assessments on major highways. Every interstate and turnpike is open for Floridians, however, everyone should continue to listen to local officials on when to return home.
  • At this point, FDOT damage assessment teams and debris removal crews are working on assessing damage on US 1 south in the Keys. No residents or visitors are permitted into the area until an assessment of damage on roadways and bridges is complete. Follow the direction of local officials regarding entrance into Monroe County.
  • FDOT continues to coordinate with Google’s emergency response team to “close” damaged roads in Google Maps in real time following damage assessments.
  • FDOT’s cut and toss crews are continuing to work with utility crews across the state to clear road debris so power can be restored quickly.
  • Bridge inspections and debris clearance are ongoing throughout the state.
  • FDOT is coordinating with other states to deploy additional resources to Florida. A number of other states have offered assistance. Maryland, Missouri and Delaware are currently deploying crews to Florida. FDOT continues to coordinate with other states.
  • Around the state, FDOT has 13 traffic management centers where hundreds of DOT workers are monitoring traffic cameras 24/7. Real-time traffic information is available at
  • Governor Scott directed the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to suspend tolls across the entire State of Florida in preparation for Hurricane Irma. Tolls remain suspended and immediate recovery efforts continue.
  • FDOT is coordinating with county emergency operations centers directly to coordinate any necessary response needs and actions, including damage assessments and road and bridge closures.


  • An aggressive recovery effort is ongoing, working with FEMA to identify and activate federal grant programs that can benefit Floridians and their communities.
  • Following Governor Rick Scott’s request a major disaster declaration by President Donald Trump. Individual Assistance is available for Broward, Charlotte, Clay, Collier, Duval, Flagler, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Putnam, Sarasota and St. John counties, Emergency Protective Measures (Category A and Category B) funded through the Federal Public Assistance Program is available for all 67 counties.


  • Residents who sustained losses in the nine declared counties can apply for assistance by registering online at Residents who suffered damages from the storm may register now, and if their county is later included in the declaration, the application will be processed automatically.
  • Governor Scott will continue to work with President Trump and FEMA to approve more funding to additional communities affected by the storm.
  • Residents are also encouraged to download the FEMA App to begin the registration process. Simply click on Disaster Resources.
  • If you do not have access to the internet, you may register by calling 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY); if you use 711 Relay or Video Relay Service call 1-800-621-3362.
  • The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.


  • Floridians affected by the storm must now begin the process of surveying damages to their property and belongings. If you need help finding your Florida’s property insurance company’s website and contact information, click HERE. For a list of licensed insurance agents in Florida, click HERE.
  • Consumers with questions about their policies and those who need help filing a claim should call the CFO’s free Insurance Consumer Helpline at 1-877-693-5236.
  • It is important to document all damaged property and belongings. A free smartphone app developed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners called “MyHome” is available to assist with photo documentation.
  • OIR has updated its “Hurricane Season Resources” webpage, which contains links to information provided by the Governor, Chief Financial Officer, Attorney General, Commissioner of Agriculture, Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Flood Insurance Program, and contact information for Florida’s property insurers.



  • More than 140 Florida State Parks remain closed, and 20 have been opened for day-use only. Park service staff have formed strike teams to respond to impacted parks and re-open them as quickly as possible. A full list of closures can be found at
  • DEP has mobilized 12 Hazardous Assessment and Response Teams in coordination with the EPA and the U.S. Coast Guard to assess hazardous waste facilities and respond to pollution incidents and other storm impacts.
  • DEP continues to coordinate with GIS and subject matter experts to map priority sites for preliminary damage assessments, and with FDOT to assure roads are cleared to priority sites to expedite assessments.
  • DEP is coordinating with US Army Corps of Engineers, FDOT, US Coast Guard, FWC, and FEMA on debris removal statewide.
  • DEP is mobilizing Beach Response Teams and participating with assistance of USACE in efforts to expedite recovery of Florida beaches.
  • DEP has issued an emergency order to ensure recovery efforts are not hampered or delayed. DEP has expanded that order for power plants to cover the entire state to assist any facility recovering from the storm and a new order to waive certain rules for fuel facilities impacted by the storm statewide. Both orders apply only to impacted facilities and have provisions to guard the environment while assisting in quick recovery of critical infrastructure.
  • DEP has established a mutual aid system to coordinate responses between utilities, the department, and other responders. This system is active and continues to coordinate and respond to the needs of drinking and waste water facilities throughout Florida.
  • DEP is working with FWC, EPA, and the U.S. Coast Guard to mitigate pollutants from submerged vessels.


  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers continues to closely monitor the lake level, which is currently at 14.46 feet.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has deemed the lake infrastructure as safe and will continue to monitor.


  • The Florida Virtual Business Emergency Operations Center business damage assessment surveying tool has been activated for businesses to report damages resulting from Hurricane Irma. Businesses are encouraged to visit Click on Hurricane Irma.
  • A private sector hotline is available at (850) 410-1403 to respond to calls from businesses and private sector support organizations.
  • The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) is readying the Disaster Unemployment Assistance Program to provide temporary income support to eligible individuals in counties approved for FEMA Individual Assistance.
  • The state is working to identify the “open/close” status of businesses. This information is being posted to the SERT Tropical Storm Irma web page: .
  • The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association members are working directly with local Salvation Army Staff to provide meals for shelter evacuees.
  • The Florida Retail Federation is assisting in coordinating information to Florida Retailers regarding restocking of emergency supplies, readying mobile pharmacies, and the transportation of fuel.
  • The Florida Small Business Development Center Network is working with federal officials to identify additional staffing and financial resources to support business response activities.
  • The Florida Chamber of Commerce is coordinating with their members and local chambers to determine post-storm recovery needs and identifying resources available to be sent to the affected areas.


Leave a Comment