Hurricane Idalia updates

ST. PETERSBURG — Yesterday, Mayor Ken Welch and the City of St. Pete team provided a storm update as Idalia continues to strengthen. If you missed the press conference, we encourage you to watch the entire video.

Mayor Welch urges residents to stay alert and continue to take the storm seriously, as heavy wind and rain will occur throughout the evening tonight.

“You may wake up tomorrow and see sunny skies and think the storm is over, but it’s important to understand the highest impact for storm surge is tomorrow afternoon around 2 p.m.”

 City of St. Petersburg Preparation Update:

  • Almost 70,000 sandbags were distributed yesterday and over the weekend. Sandbag distribution is officially COMPLETE.
  • City facilities closed today and tomorrow – including the St. Pete Pier and Sunken Gardens
  • All City Brush Sites will close at 3 p.m. today to prepare for Hurricane Idalia. If you need to drop off yard waste or recyclable materials – please do so before 3 p.m. today. Locations can be found at
  • St. Pete Police are patrolling community and enforcing evacuations – reminder, there is currently a mandatory evacuation for Zone A. Check your zone here: 
  • St. Pete Fire is working on special needs assistance today.
  • Trash & recycling happening today — not tomorrow. After your trash is picked up, please secure trash cans.
  • Housing team working with unhoused to help find shelters.
  • City of St. Petersburg Employee shelter opens at 4 p.m.

What to Expect Tuesday Evening into Wednesday Afternoon:

  • High winds expected Tuesday evening.
  • Highest impact of the storm – Storm surge expected Wednesday afternoon at 2 p.m.
  • When residents wake up Wednesday morning, they are not out of the storm. It may be sunny outside, but 4-7 ft storm surge will begin to occur – the worst part of the day will be around 2 p.m.
  • Important to urge people to stay in their homes until officials deem it safe to go outside.
  • Variable message boards may be placed at entrance and exits for low lying neighborhoods. Police will also be positioned there to patrol entrances and exits.

SeeClickFix / Reporting Storm Issues:

  • SeeClickFix tool will switch over at noon to report ALL storm-related issues.
  • Please direct residents to report downed trees and flooded streets through this tool – 727-893-7111
  • Once emergency is over – the tool will switch back to regular city issue reporting

Shelters Are Open:

*10 total shelters open in Pinellas – 4 shelters below are in St. Pete:

  • Campbell Park Elementary School, 1051 7th Ave S, St. Petersburg
  • Gibbs High School (pets), 850 34th St S, St. Petersburg
  • John Hopkins Middle School in St. Petersburg (special needs), 701 16th St S, St. Petersburg
  • New Heights Elementary School, 3901 37th St N, St. Petersburg

Emergency Preparedness:

 Other county numbers

  State of Florida

Federal agencies

  • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) — (800) 621-3362
  • National Hurricane Center
  • National Weather Service/Tampa Bay Area
  • NOAA Weather Alert Radio — Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME) code for Pinellas County: 012103

 Utility Companies

  Other Agencies

A Flood Watch is now in effect for Pinellas County, in addition to the Hurricane Warning and Storm Surge Warning.

Hurricane Idalia continues to strengthen and is forecast to rapidly intensify into a Major Hurricane as it approaches the Florida Big Bend or West-Central Florida coast. 

  • VISIT FLORIDA has activated the Emergency Accommodations Module with Expedia to provide real-time availability of hotel rooms throughout the state:
  • Hotel availability information can be found at
  • The State of Florida has suspended tolls throughout west-central Florida.
  • Ten shelters are open across the county for those who need a safe place to go. See the latest information at
  • PSTA will operate fare free all-day today until services need to be stopped due to hazardous wind conditions.
  • Uber is offering free round-trip rides up to $35 each way to shelters with promo code IDALIARELIEF.
  • Florida Commerce has activated the private sector hotline at 850-815-4925 for businesses and the private sector to ask questions and get information.
  • Residents who suspect local price gouging can report it to Pinellas County Consumer Protection at (727) 464-6200. They are also encouraged to report it to the Attorney General’s hotline at 1-866-9-NO-SCAM.

The County Information Center is open, and residents can call 727-464-4333 or chat with questions. 

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