Taylor County Prepares for possible impacts from Hurricane Ian

Posted at 8:11 PM, Sep 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-27 20:11:18-04

Some of the people who live on Keaton Beach in Taylor County are packing up their things, hitching their boat trailers and headed further inland to try to escape some of the potential flooding. Others, however, say they're staying put.

"Get yourself prepared, don't wait until the last minute," said Sheriff Pagett.

Taylor County Sheriff Wayne Pagett is preparing for the impacts his county could see from Hurricane Ian. He said high winds, storm surge and possible flash floods are his main concerns.

"I love it here and you know don't plan on leaving. I mean I'll have my truck ready to go in case I have to but other than that, I'll be right here," said Webb.

John Webb has lived in Keaton Beach for about two years. He is clearing debris out of his yard ad has moved everything he can up to the second floor. Webb said he's seen the water rise from storm surge to his property level before. However, the potential flooding and voluntary evacuation order isn't changing his mind about leaving.

Terry Bitner, on the other hand, is thinking about leaving. He has spent the last few moving everything off the lower part of his house, his boat and plans to move his RV. Bitner said he has plans to leave if things change.

"We'll wait and see what the morning brings. In the morning if it takes the track away from shore, yes we'll evacuate. We got a contingency in town, we got the food and stuff at the house in town and we'll be ready for it then," said Bitner.

The County issued a voluntary evacuation for costal and flood prone areas with the anticipation of seeing two to four feet of flooding.

"We're making storm shelter, we're getting ready for people that's on the road that's traveling that needs a place to stay and we're just trying to get ourselves prepared," said Sheriff Pagett.

Taylor County Schools will be closed Wednesday through Friday.

Taylor County Elementary School will opening as a shelter Wednesday at 8 AM.

County Officials urge people to stay informed and listen to any mandatory evacuation orders if they happen.