ENGLEWOOD BEACH — Charlotte County is preparing to potentially see the worst impacts from Tropical Storm Elsa across Southwest Florida.
The County has already declared a State of Emergency, and it expects the Englewood Beach area to see the most rainfall.
We talked with Commission Chair Bill Truex. He said the County doesn't want people to fall into a false sense of security. It was a beautiful day on the beach Monday, so it was easy to forget that a tropical storm is brewing just on the horizon.
"It’s a beautiful day, so it’s hard to believe that there’s actually going to be a storm," said Annette Marble, who is renting a condo on the beach.
"Everybody’s out, there’s beach balls flying around and stuff like that. You wouldn’t think there’s anything coming," said Brian Hall, who just moved down to Florida.
But Truex is warning people not to get complacent.
"To take some precautionary measures today would be very important. Go get some extra water," said Truex.
Truex said, despite the beautiful weather Monday, the County is expecting up to 55 mile per hour winds, and two to six inches of rainfall in Englewood. That could shut down stores, something Marble said she didn’t realize when she rented her condo.
"Never thought about that, so yeah that could be a possibility. We might have to go out and get some supplies," said Marble.
Truex said, despite the higher than usual number of tourists, the County has a plan to take care of the permanent residents who rely on electricity for medical reasons.
"There are about 40 people dependent on electricity on this side of the Myakka river, and so we’re prepared to deploy to move them if necessary," said Truex.
But Truex said the biggest message from the County for tourists is to make Monday the last beach day until the storm passes.
"Don’t come to the beach to see what the waves look like. Stay off the roads and be safe," said Truex.