Truckers preparing as Florida emergency declared ahead of strengthening Tropical Storm Ian

Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida has declared a state of emergency for the state of Florida over the weekend as Tropical Storm Ian has increased in danger as it passes through the Caribbean and is projected to be a big hurricane. Truck drivers and others involved in freight transportation and logistics are already preparing, though it is unclear where the storm will make landfall.

Ian was expected to strengthen before moving over western Cuba and toward the west coast of Florida and the Florida Panhandle by the middle of this week, according to the National Hurricane Center. The agency advised Floridians to have hurricane plans in place and to monitor updates on the storm’s evolving path.

The Trucker shared Jim Crume’s thoughts on what is going on. “Right now, we just don’t know, but I’ve got a few rigs that run throughout Florida, so we are preparing to begin taking them off the roads as soon as forecasters tell us where the storm will hit,” said Jim Crume, who owns a small trucking company based in Tampa Bay. “If we need to, we can help haul water or other things after the storm is over. Wherever it hits is gonna need a lot of help.”

Hurricane Center updated the advisory at 5 AM on Sunday, September 25, 2022: The tropical storm was forecast to begin “rapidly strengthening later today” with the “risk of significant wind and storm surge impacts increasing for western Cuba.” Ian was forecast to become a hurricane on Sunday and a major hurricane by late Monday. On Sunday morning, the storm had top sustained winds of 50 mph as it swirled about 345 miles southeast of Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands.

According to John Cangialosi, a senior hurricane specialist at the Miami-based center, it is not yet clear where Ian will hit the hardest in Florida. He advised residents to begin preparing for the storm, including stockpiling supplies in case of power outages.