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Updates On Hurricane Matthew, As Treasure Coast Spared From Worst

As Hurricane Matthew continues to approach Florida, we're keeping you updated on the storm's effects on Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River counties. 

Note: Evacuation orders are now in place in Martin County. As of Thursday afternoon, an additional shelter has opened in Martin County. 

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Advisory Updates

Evacuations

School Closings

Hurricane Shelters

Supplies and Safety Tips

Event Cancelations 

Tweets


THE LATEST: 

Friday, Oct. 7, 8 a.m. 

Hurricane Matthew—now a category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds of 120 mph—spared the Treasure Coast from its worst as it continues to move up along the state’s eastern coast toward Jacksonville, Georgia, and South Carolina. 

Speaking during a press conference this morning, Martin County Sheriff William Snyder expressed relief that Hurricane Matthew did not make landfall in the area, as previously forecasted. 

“Life on the Treasure Coast would’ve changed forever, and this place never would’ve looked the same,” Snyder said. “This could’ve been so much worse.” 

Farther north, Indian River County officials reported debris in roadways, downed power lines and minor flooding in areas, but said there was no major damage to buildings. 

A St. Lucie County woman did die overnight, however, after going into cardiac arrest. Emergency crews could not respond to the call, which came in around 1:20 a.m., since the district had suspended operations due to weather. 

Hurricane Matthew is currently located 35 miles north-northeast of Cape Canaveral and 45 miles east-southeast of Daytona Beach. 

About 119,000 total FPL customers remain without power in Martin, St. Lucie, and Indian River counties.

For those who are taking to the roads, please remember, if you come across an out traffic signal, treat it as a four-way stop. Crews are cleaning up any debris on the streets. 

 

Thursday, Oct. 6, 11 p.m. update: 

As of 11 p.m., Hurricane Matthew was located 50 miles north-northwest of Freeport, Grand Bahama Island, as the eye edges toward Florida’s east coast. 

Forecasters expect the storm—still a category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph—to weaken slightly over the next 48 hours as it continues to head northwest, past Palm Beach County.

Hurricane-strength conditions are expected to reach warning areas over the next few hours and spread northward through Friday. Tropical storm conditions will continue to spread in the area tonight and Friday. 

Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River counties remain under a hurricane warning as feeder bands from the system make their way across the areas. Broward and Miami-Dade are under a tropical storm warning. 

 

Thursday, Oct. 6, 9 p.m. update: 

Martin County shelters closed down to the public at 8 p.m. Officials say it's simply not safe for residents to travel at the time. 

As an 8 p.m. advisory, Hurricane Matthew was located about 75 miles of West Palm Beach. Maximum sustained winds were 130 mph, which still classifies the storm as a category 4 system. 

 

Thursday, Oct. 6, 5 p.m., advisory: 

Hurricane Matthew is located 23 miles south-southeast of Freeport, Grand Bahama Island, and about 100 miles west of West Palm Beach. 

The storm remains a category 4 hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 140 mph. Some fluctuation in intensity is expected. 

Tropical storm conditions are expected to continue moving in across most of South Florida over the next few hours, with hurricane-strength conditions expected to arrive in warning areas tonight. 

Since the last advisory, hurricane warnings have been extended to South Santee River, South Carolina, and tropical warnings have been issued from there north to Surf City, North Carolina. 

At this point, forecasters say they expect stronger parts of Hurricane Matthew to come toward land just north of Palm Beach and Central Florida. Winds are still expected to affect the areas south of those communities.  

 

Thursday, Oct. 6, 11 a.m. advisory: 

Hurricane Matthew has strengthened to a category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 140 mph. 

The storm is currently located about 25 miles west-northwest of Nassau, Bahamas, and 180 miles west of West Palm Beach. 

Effects from the storm are expected to reach South Florida within the next few hours, with hurricane conditions beginning to reach areas under a hurricane warning later this evening. 

Speaking from Stuart, Gov. Rick Scott urged all Florida residents to stay off the beaches and take all warnings and evacuations seriously. 

“This is game day. This is when it’s going to hit,” he said. 

Martin County has issued a local state of emergency and has ordered mandatory evacuations for Hutchinson Island, Jupiter Island, Sewall’s Point and mobiles homes, as well as homes in low-lying areas. (Click here to skip to a list of local shelters.) 

An additional shelter has been scheduled to open in Martin County. The location is J.D. Parker Elementary School, located at 1050 SE 10th Street in Stuart. It will open at 1 p.m. 

 

Thursday, Oct. 6, 8 a.m. advisory: 

Hurricane Matthew is located about 30 miles south-southwest of Nassau, Bahamas, and about 215 miles southeast of West Palm Beach.

The category 3 storm has strengthened slightly, with maximum sustained winds now at 125 mph. Forecasters expect Matthew to strengthen to a category 4 storm as it continues its approach to South Florida. 

Hurricane warnings remain for a majority of South Florida, with tropical storm warnings still in place for areas from Golden Beach in Miami-Dade County south through the Keys. 

Watches and warnings have been issued along much of the eastern coast of the U.S., going as far north as South Santee River, South Carolina.

The eye of the storm should pass near Grand Bahama Island late Thursday and move close to the Florida peninsula Thursday night through Friday night. 

Gov. Rick Scott is headed to Stuart to meet with emergency officials. 

 

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 11 p.m. advisory:

As of 11 p.m., the eye of the storm was located about 125 miles south-southeast of Nassau, Bahamas, and 325 miles southeast of West Palm Beach. 

Still a category 3 storm, Hurricane Matthew has maximum sustained winds of 115 mph. 

The storm is expected to gain strength and, it could be a category 4 hurricane as it heads toward Florida. 

Most of South Florida remains under a hurricane warning, with communities from Golden Beach down to the Keys still under a tropical storm warning. 

Hurricane conditions are expected to approach areas currently under hurricane warning by Thursday night, with tropical storm conditions coming in as early as Thursday morning. 

Hurricane warnings have also been issued for areas from the Flagler/Volusia county line up north to Fernandina Beach, which is located near Jacksonville. Hurricane watches are in effect for areas north of Fernandina Beach to Edisto Beach, South Carolina. 

 

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 11 a.m. advisory:

As of 11 a.m., Hurricane Matthew was located about 55 miles north-northeast of Cuba, and 105 miles south of Long Island in the Bahamas. 

Maximum sustained winds were 120 mph, making Matthew a category 3 hurricane. The National Hurricane Center notes Matthew could remain at category 3 or get stronger while it moves through the Bahamas and approaches Florida's east coast. 

Most of South Florida remains under a hurricane warning, meaning hurricane-strength conditions are expected, with areas from the Keys up to Golden Beach in Miami-Dade County still under tropical storm warning. 

Forecasters expect Matthew to move across the Bahamas later today, with hurricane conditions expected to reach Florida's hurricane warning area by late Thursday. Tropical storm conditions may be apparent, however, as early as Thursday morning. 

Officials urge Florida residents to finish any storm prep, including gathering supplies and putting up shutters, today. 

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 5 a.m. advisory: 

As of 5 a.m., Hurricane Matthew was located about 65 miles north-northwest of the eastern tip of Cuba, and 155 miles south-southeast of Long Island in the Bahamas. 

Maximum sustained winds were 125 mph, which downgrades Matthew to a category 3 hurricane. However, the National Hurricane Center notes the storm is expected to strengthen over the next couple of days. 

Since the 11 p.m. advisory, hurricane watches have been extended up Florida’s east coast to Fernandina Beach, located near Jacksonville. 

Most of South Florida remains under a hurricane warning, with areas from the Keys up to Golden Beach in Miami Dade County still under tropical storm warning. 

The storm is expected to make a north-northwest turn today, and a northwest turn this evening. Forecasters expect Matthew to move across the Bahamas Thursday, and be near Florida Thursday evening. 

Officials urge Florida residents to finish any storm prep, including gathering supplies and putting up shutters, today. 

 

Tuesday, Oct. 4, 11 p.m. advisory:

Image via National Hurricane Center

As of the 11 p.m. advisory, the storm was located 55 miles east-northeast of Guantanamo, Cuba, and 20 miles northwest of the eastern tip of Cuba.

The eye of the storm was moving off the northeastern coast of the island.

Maximum sustained winds decreased slightly to 130 mph. However, Hurricane Matthew remains a category 4 storm, which is classified as having wind speeds of 130 to 156 mph. 

Hurricane warnings have now been issued for Golden Beach in Miami-Dade County up through Sebastian Inlet (just north of Vero Beach) and Lake Okeechobee. Hurricane conditions are expected to affect these areas. 

Tropical storm watches previously issued from the Keys to Golden Beach have been upgraded to tropical storm warnings. Hurricane watches now extend from parts of the Treasure Coast north to the Flagler/Volusia county line. 

The National Weather Service urges residents to prep for the storm, which may bring damaging winds, heavy rain, isolated tornadoes, rough surf and coastal flooding to South Florida starting as early as Thursday morning. 

 

Tuesday, Oct. 4, 5 p.m. advisory: 

Image via National Hurricane Center

As of the 5 p.m. advisory, the storm was located 65 miles east-southeast of Guantanamo, Cuba, and 30 miles south-southwest of the eastern tip of Cuba. 

Hurricane watches, originally declared from Deerfield Beach up through Central Florida, have now been extended south through Golden Beach in Miami-Dade County. 

The Florida Keys up through Golden Beach remain under tropical storm watch. 

Maximum sustained winds are 140 mph, which classifies Hurricane Matthew as a category 4 storm. Fluctuations in intensity are expected, but Matthew is projected to remain a major hurricane through Thursday night. 

Florida areas under hurricane watch may see hurricane conditions late Thursday, with tropical storm conditions by early Thursday. 

 

Tuesday, Oct. 4, 11 a.m. advisory:

As Hurricane Matthew makes its way over Haiti, hurricane watches have been issued from Deerfield Beach in Broward County up through the Volusia/Brevard county line in Central Florida.

That includes Palm Beach County, Martin County, St. Lucie County and Indian River County.

Tropical storm watches are in effect from the Florida Keys up through Deerfield Beach, plus Lake Okeechobee.  

The eye of the category 4 storm, with current maximum sustained winds of 145 mph, made landfall near Les Anglais in Haiti on Tuesday, Oct. 4 at 7 a.m. Matthew is expected to remain “a powerful hurricane” through Wednesday night, the National Hurricane Center notes. 

As of the 11 a.m. advisory, the storm was located about 35 miles north-northeast of Tiburon, Haiti, and 90 miles south of the eastern tip of Cuba. The eye was located in the Gulf of Gonave. 

Hurricane warnings are in effect for Haiti, parts of Cuba, the southeastern Bahamas, central Bahamas and northwestern Bahamas. 

The latest forecast model puts Matthew near the Bahamas around 8 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 5 and off the east coast of Florida by 8 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 6. 

Hurricane conditions are possible in Florida counties currently under hurricane watch by Thursday evening, with tropical storm conditions approaching by Thursday morning. 

The National Weather Service in Miami notes potential impacts that include strong winds, heavy rain and isolated tornadoes. The agency also notes dangerous beach conditions and a high risk of rip currents. 

Florida Gov. Rick Scott issued a state of emergency Monday evening, urging residents in all counties to prepare for the storm. In the event of a direct hit to Florida, Scott cautioned, the storm could bring the kind of damage the state hasn't seen since Hurricane Andrew in 1992.  

 

EVACUATIONS:

Martin County

Martin County has ordered evacuations in advance of Hurricane Matthew. The order applies to residences on the barrier islands (Hutchinson Island and Jupiter Island), Sewall's Point, and manufactured/mobile homes (due to wind), as well as homes in low-lying areas. This evacuation order is due to the predicted storm surge of 3-5 feet associated with Hurricane Matthew. Residents are urged to follow the evacuation order.

 

St. Lucie County

Evacuations in St. Lucie County are currently voluntary, according to a county public information officer. To stay updated on evacuations, see their website.

 

Indian River County

Indian River County Emergency Management has advised residents to contemplate evacuating and make their plans accordingly.

Voluntary Evacuations - Residents and visitors to the barrier island and mobile home parks throughout the county are encouraged to do voluntary evacuations. This means to family or friends residences out of the path of the storm or out of state. Shelters in Indian River County have not been opened at this time and will be announced this afternoon.

 

SCHOOLS: 

Martin County School District announced early dismissal for Wednesday, Oct. 5. Schools will be closed Thursday and Friday. All athletic events and after-school programs are canceled. For updates, check the district's Facebook pageTwitter page, and website for the latest. 

St. Lucie Public Schools will let out early on Wednesday, Oct. 5. Schools will be closed Thursday and Friday. All athletic events and after-school programs are canceled. The district plans to resume classes Monday, Oct. 10, but will keep parents updated through School Messenger and social media

School District of Indian River County will let our early on Wednesday, Oct. 5. The decision on whether to close schools Thursday and Friday will be made Tuesday night. Here are the links to the website and Facebook page for any future announcements. Officials said they will also communicate via phone messages. 

 

HURRICANE SUPPLIES: 

As a reminder, here are some things you should have handy in your storm kit: 

  • At least 1 gallon of water per person for three to five days. (Keep in mind you’ll need a bit extra for any food prep and personal hygiene.) 
  • Stock up on non-perishable food items, including cereal, canned foods (such as tuna, vegetables, soups), powdered milk, canned juices, dried fruit, peanut butter, crackers and granola bars.
  • Flashlights, candles (good idea to store matches in waterproof container) 
  • First aid kit 
  • A supply of any necessary prescription medications you may need to have on hand
  • Can opener/bottle opener
  • Toilet paper, napkins, baby wipes, garbage bags, towels 
  • Make sure your phone is charged, and keep an extra battery handy if you have one. 

 

SHELTERS: 

Martin County 

According to the Martin County Board of County Commissioners, Red Cross and special needs shelters will be open Wednesday. 

Port Salerno Elementary School

3260 SE Lionel Terrace, Stuart

(opens at 5 p.m. Wednesday)

 

Jensen Beach High School

2875 NW Goldenrod Road, Jensen Beach

(opens at 6 p.m. Wednesday)

 

Hidden Oaks Middle School

2801 SW Martin Highway, Palm City

(opens at 7 a.m. Thursday)

 

Warfield Elementary School

15260 SW 150th Street, Indiantown

(opens at 7 a.m. Thursday)

 

J.D. Parker Elementary School

1050 SE 10th Street, Stuart

(opens at 1 p.m. Thursday) 

 

 

Note: Martin County is working with its partners to begin activation of Anderson Middle School in Stuart as a Special Needs Shelter Wednesday at 2 p.m. This shelter is for residents with special medical needs who have pre-registered. Residents who come to the shelter and do not meet the requirements will be re-directed to another shelter suitable for their needs.

 

St. Lucie County 

St. Lucie County officials have announced the addition of a fourth shelter, at Fort Pierce Central High School. See below for addresses and opening times. 

Those heading to shelters should bring water, food, clothing, sheets, personal items, medications, and important papers, as well as forms of entertainment. Pets, alcohol and firearms will not be permitted inside the shelter. 

Lakewood Park Elementary School
7800 Indrio Road, Fort Pierce
To open: Thursday, Oct. 6, at 8 a.m. 

Samuel Gaines Elementary
2250 Jenkins Road, Fort Pierce
To open: Thursday, Oct. 6, at 8 a.m. 

Treasure Coast High School
1000 SW Darwin Blvd., Port St. Lucie  
To open: Thursday, Oct. 6, at 8 a.m. 

Fort Pierce Central High School
4101 South 25th St., Fort Pierce
To open: Thursday, Oct. 6, at 10 a.m. 

 

EVENT CANCELLATIONS/POSTPONEMENTS

Several Treasure Coast events have been canceled or postponed due to the potential for inclement weather.

These include: The St. Lucie County Update luncheon (moved to Nov. 2), Panera Goes Pink (moved to Oct. 14), Beach Town Music Festival (new date to be announced), and more.

Please check event websites for the latest updates if you have made any plans.

 

TWEETS

For live updates from Stuart Magazine, follow along on Twitter @Stuart_Magazine.