Express Lane Sept 26: Tampa Bay Hurricane History, Charlie Crist in PR

As the state casts its eye on Ian and the constantly shifting models, one thing remains clear. The Tampa Bay Area which has not been directly hit by a Hurricane since 1921 (1968 if you count Citrus County) is going to get a real dose of what the rest of the state has suffered through. Every east coast region from Jacksonville south has experienced a direct hit from a Hurricane since 1964, from Daytona south since 2004. Every area of Southwest Florida has suffered multiple direct hits since 2004. Along the Panhandle and Big Bend outside of the 2006-2015 time period (when no Hurricanes hit the state), it feels like direct hits are a yearly occurrence. The Tampa Bay seemed the one place due to its unique geography that was safe in the state, and the closest call, Charley in 2004, veered south and hardly impacted the area.

But the improbable run of luck is about to run out. Please stay safe everyone in the Tampa Bay Area and feel free to consult anyone in the rest of Florida about how to cope. We’ve all been through it and we are here for you now.

Southeast Florida looks to be the one area of the state not directly in the path of any storm models related to Ian. But as residents of Miami-Dade and Broward learned the hard way in Irma, if a storm makes landfall in SW Florida, it’s likely to have serious impacts on the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area even if you avoid a direct hit. This is why focusing on the center track of the storm and the cone sometimes is foolhardy. Stay aware and listen to local authorities.

Governor Crist’s scheduled rally with President Biden for Tuesday in Orlando has been cancelled due to Ian. It’s worth noting Democratic US Senate nominee Congresswoman Val Demings, who is from Orlando was planning on skipping the event per our sources.

Last week we mentioned how much Rick Scott focused on Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria and that our hunch was that Governor DeSantis wouldn’t bother after Fiona, because it’s off-brand for him (it’s really anti-brand for him if you get our drift). Well, Charlie Crist has taken advantage of DeSantis’ lack of interest and gone to the island to talk to spend time with survivors.

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