Storm bears down on Florida

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Florida Governor Rick Scott declares an emergency in 42 of the state’s 67 counties in advance of an expected tropical storm that could make landfall on the north-central Gulf Coast, causing flooding and fierce winds. Jillian Kitchener reports.

Storm bears down on Florida

Florida Governor Rick Scott has declared an emergency in 42 counties, with parts of the Gulf Coast under a tropical storm warning and a hurricane watch from an approaching system.

Surfers have already experienced a high rip current this week. And the Governor says it’s about to get worse.

(SOUNDBITE) FLORIDA GOVERNOR RICK SCOTT, SAYING:

“We have the potential for 7-9 feet storm surge, I guess, 3-6 feet of storm surge potential of 7-feet of storm surge. So the first thing that is going to happen is we have significant risk along our coast. We’re going to see a lot of rain, we’re going to see 5-10 inches of rain, potentially even 15 inches of rain.”

Officials say the tropical storm could make landfall on the north-central Gulf Coast between late Thursday and early Friday.

And forecasters say it could reach near hurricane strength.

Scott is advising Floridians to have a plan in place and stay away from flooded areas:

(SOUNDBITE) FLORIDA GOVERNOR RICK SCOTT, SAYING:

“We have 8,000 members of our National Guard that are prepared to be mobilized… but you as individuals have to do your part. Have three days of water, three days of food.”

On its current path, the system would also bring heavy rain into coastal areas of Georgia and the Carolinas on its way to the Atlantic Ocean.

Tags : florida, down, Bears, storm

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