TAMPA, Fla. - The Bay Area is under a state of emergency as leaders brace for Tropical Storm Elsa.
"Please review your hurricane plans now and restock your emergency kit as needed. We're looking at storm surge. We're looking at heavy rain," Governor Ron DeSantis said.
MacDill Air Force Base evacuated its KC-135 refueling planes to McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas on Sunday as a precaution against the winds Tropical Storm Elsa may bring to the Bay Area.
Meanwhile, multiple cities and counties have opened up sandbag stations for residents. In Pasco County, at least four locations are open and available 24/7. Locations are also now open in Manatee County with plans to open stations in Hillsborough and Hernando counties beginning Monday.
"Please heed the governor's warnings and heed your local emergency managers' warnings about the safe operation of generators," Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie said.
Carbon monoxide poisoning is a major concern. According to state officials, in the last four years, Florida had more in-direct or post-disaster-related deaths than they have actual direct deaths because of effects from the storm.
"If you do have a generator, you have to operate that generator so that the exhaust is outside. You can't put it inside your house and you can't put it inside your garage," DeSantis explained.
With power outages possible, the Florida Division of Emergency Management is asking residents to pick up any loose limbs or debris near their homes, especially for people living on the Nature Coast.
"This area is very susceptible to live oaks, water oak type trees that will bring down power. Again be ready to be without power for an extended period of time," Guthrie stated.
Officials recommend having enough water, food and supplies to last 14 days. For households, that's mean at least a gallon of water, per person, per day.
"Listen to your local emergency manager for special needs evacuations, power-dependent evacuations. Your local emergency manager will know what is best for your situation," Guthrie said.