ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 meteorologist Jonathan Kegges spoke with the director of the National Hurrican Center on Sunday about the impacts Florida could see from Tropical Storm Eta.
Eta was once a Category 4 hurricane but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center issued tropical storm warnings for southern Florida and the Florida Keys, and warnings were issued for central Cuba; parts of southern Florida and the Keys were even put under a hurricane watch.
The system was expected to approach the Florida Keys and south Florida late Sunday or Monday.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency Saturday for eight counties at the end of the state as Eta approached, urging residents to stock up on supplies. South Florida started emptying ports and a small number of shelters opened in Miami and the Florida Keys for residents in mobile homes and low lying areas.
Miami-Dade County declared a state of emergency Friday night and also warned a flood watch would be in effect through Tuesday night.
Further south in the Keys, officials were monitoring the storm closely but had no plans yet to evacuate tourists or residents. They urged residents to secure their boats and encouraged visitors to consider altering plans until Eta had passed.
“Residents need to monitor this storm and be prepared for high tropical-storm-force sustained winds and hurricane-strength gusts,” said Shannon Wiener, Monroe County Emergency Management Director.