As Hurricane Irma moves closer and closer to Florida and the “cone of uncertainty” grows narrower, it is looking more likely that the state’s west coast will face a major hurricane. This includes Citrus County, which includes Homosassa Springs and Inverness. Shelters in the county have been open since Friday afternoon, so it’s important to know if you live in an evacuation zone and where the shelters are. A mandatory evacuation has been ordered in some parts of the county.
WFLA reported on Friday that evacuations were ordered for all residents west of US 19 and 1.5 miles east of US 19. This includes residents living in low-lying areas and mobile homes. However, the order doesn’t include Sugarmill Woods.
In addition to the maps below, you can click here to use the FloridaDisaster.org map. You can also call the Citrus citizen information line at 352-527-2106 and 352-746-5470. Updates are alos posted at the Citrus County Emergency Management website.
Residents heading to a shelter should make sure they have all important documents and papers with them, as well as extra clothing, medicine, pillow, blanket, toiletries and sleeping bags. You should pack light since there is limited space at each shelter.
Residents who need a special needs shelter can click here for the registration form. The special needs shelter is Renaissance School at 3630 West Educational Path in Lecanto. The shelter opened on Friday at 2 p.m. A pet-friendly shelter is also available at Lecanto Primary School at 3790 West Educational Path in Lecanto.
Here are the general population shelters, which have been open since Friday, via Fox13:
Lecanto Middle School: 3800 West Education Path in Lecanto (general population)
Lecanto Primary School: 3790 West Educational Path in Lecanto (general population, pet-friendly shelter)
Renaissance School: 3630 West Education Path in Lecanto (special-needs shelter)
Central Ridge Elementary School: 185 West Citrus Springs Boulevard in Citrus Springs
Lecanto High School: 3810 West Education Path in Lecanto
Forest Ridge Elementary School: 2927 North Forest Ridge Boulevard in Hernando
According to the Weather.com forecast, Hurricane Irma is expected to be a Category 3 storm with winds at 120 mph when it reaches Tampa. The 8 a.m. ET public advisory from the National Hurricane Center has expanded its hurricane watches from the central panhandle all the way around the Florida peninsula to Jacksonville. Hurricane Warnings are in effect for North of the Flagler/Volusia County Line to Fernandina Beach and North and west of Chassahowitzka to Indian Pass.
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