Manatee County Officials Prepare for Hurricane Michael

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MANATEE COUNTY – “We’re going to get some high winds even if we don’t get brunt force of this storm,” said Bob Smith who is the Public Safety Director of Manatee County.

“So ask them to secure up their homes by picking up lawn furniture and grills,” Steve Litschauer. Appointed Acting Chief of Manatee County Emergency Management.

Hurricane Michael has the potential to be a major hurricane.

Congressman Vern Buchanan wants you to be prepared for the worst, saying you never know what a storm may do.

“I remember Charlie. When that storm was coming up the coast it was supposed to hit Tampa and North of Tampa and it was Category 2. It instantly became a Category 4 and it did a B-line into Fort Meyers and North of Fort Meyers so these storms make up their own mind in terms of where they’re going to go,” said Buchanan.

Manatee County will also monitor an increase of tide this week.

“We could see anywhere from an addition of 2 inches to 8 inches of rain,” said Litschauer.

With the extra rain that may be on the streets and in your neighborhood, Manatee County, the City of Bradenton, and Anna Maria Island will supply sand bags.

“We have plenty of sand. We have thousands of sand bags. We even have a filling station where they can be filled,” said Dan Murphy, Mayor of Anna Maria Island.

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Jessika Ward is a Sarasota native and an award-winning multimedia journalist. She joined the Suncoast News Network in February of 2018 and is happy to be back in her hometown. Jessika won three Florida Associated Press Awards while a student at Florida A&M University. Prior to coming to SNN, Jessika interned with WWSB ABC7 and worked as a videographer/editor at WTXL ABC27 in Tallahassee. ​​Jessika Ward is a proud rattler and Historically Black College and University (HBCU) advocate. She shares her HBCU experience in "Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities,” a documentary about the history and future of HBCU's that was presented in the Sundance Film Festival and aired on PBS. Jessika's hobbies include photography, watching independent films, watching sports, and reading a good book.

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