Monroe County, as well as all the municipalities in the Florida Keys such as Key West, Marathon, Layton, Islamorada Village of Islands and Key Colony Beach, have developed their own Disaster Preparedness Plan especially to deal with tropical cyclone emergencies. The multiple purposes of this plan are:
• Reduce vulnerability of people to damage, injury and loss of life and property.
• Prepare for prompt and efficient response and recovery.
• Prepare for prompt and efficient rescue, care and treatment of victims.
• Provide a setting of rapid and orderly restoration of services and rehabilitation of affected property.
• Provide for interagency coordination to facilitate immediate delivery of assistance.
Once the county officials declare a local State of Emergency, the Preparedness Plan is put into action. Depending upon the level of the threat of the approaching storm, the various agencies will take action in coordination with Monroe County’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC).
At timed intervals before landfall, different parts of the plan will be implemented. These include early visitor, boater and special-needs evacuations; coordination of response and recovery teams; any necessary mandatory evacuations and all necessary interagency coordination.
As county and city officials have a Disaster Preparedness Plan for residents and visitors, so should each resident have their own plan. Use the resources in this guide to formulate your own plan, and then make sure you follow the plan when needed.
A government-authored preparedness guide is available online from FEMA.
For all immediate emergencies, dial 911
• Monroe County
Emergency Information Hotline: 1.800.955.5504
• State of Florida Emergency Information: 1.800.342.3557
• Monroe County
• Key Colony Beach
• Monroe County School District 305.293.1400
• College of the Florida Keys 305.296.9081
Special Needs Evacuation Assistance 305.292.4591
• Florida Keys Electric Coop 305.852.2431
•Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority 305.296.2454
• Keys Energy Services 305.295.1000
GET THE APPS
The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office has developed a smartphone app to keep residents informed of emergency situations ranging from traffic accidents to hurricane evacuation. The app is available for both iPhone and Android users. Download it for free. Monroe County also has a free app called Alert! Monroe, available for Android and IOS devices. It provides alerts regarding severe weather, emergency road closures, boil water notices, water service interruption, missing persons and evacuations of neighborhoods.