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ICE – In Case of an Emergency

The information found in this section is designed to give you immediate understanding based on specific events that might be occurring right now. Please find the area below to get started.

Please Note: Never use information provided on this or any other website for the protection of life or property. When severe storms are occurring in, or threaten your location, tune to your local NOAA NWS weather station or a local radio or TV broadcaster in your area for immediate weather information.

All Immediate emergencies

Call 911. Be sure to give the operator your call back number, your name, your address, and the type of emergency in as much detail as you can provide. If you need to hang up, stay close to your phone for a call back if needed prior to emergency help arriving.


In the event of a tornado watch or warning being issues by the national Weather Services, it is important to understand what to do in both cases:


Tornado Watch

A tornado watch means that conditions are favorable for a tornado. When a tornado watch is issued, it is important to know what you will do if the watch changes to a warning.


During a watch, you should take the opportunity to move some of your survival items to a safe interior room of your location. This room should be away from exterior doors and windows. These items should include water, first aid kit, battery operated radio, and weather radio. Keep in mind that many times, the storm can move from a watch to a storm on the ground coming right at you in 15 minutes or less.

Tornado Warning

 A tornado warning means that you should take cover in your safe area immediately. Don’t wait to see if you need to. In many cases, if you hear the sound or see the storm, it is too late. Go now and wait for the warning to expire by listening to your radio.

Tornado help from Pinellas County:

If you believe you see a Tornado

If you see a tornado on the ground or see what you believe to be an active, rotating, funnel cloud, you should call either the National Weather Service in Ruskin at (813) 645-2323 or dial 911. Be sure you give your location and the location of the suspected tornado in reference to your location (N, S, E, W) + estimated distance.

Thunderstorms and Lightning

Stay inside and wait for the storm to pass. In the event that you are caught out in the open, find shelter in a secure location. Keep in mind, Tampa Florida is the lightning strike capital of the US and second in the world.


If you find yourself in rising water, seek higher ground. If you are in a vehicle, don’t drive across flood waters. First, you don’t know really how deep they are because road damage might have occurred under the water. Second, it only takes a small amount of water to lift even the largest of vehicles. Turn around, don’t drown.


If you have not evacuated and the wind speed has reached 40 sustained MPH, prepare to ride out the storm. Most roads close in Pinellas County above 40 MPH. Now is the time to get your plan out and start preparing your personal spaces for large volumes of water. You will also want to insure you have adequate water supplies. If the storm is going to hit you for sure, some options you may want to consider for water.

Emergency Water Options

Most water heaters hold between 20 and 50 gallons of fresh water. If you turn the feed line off to insure it does not get contaminated, you can use that water to drink. Another option is to fill your washer with water and turn it off before it goes into the spin cycle.

Options right after the Storm

If you have your emergency plan in place, this should have included food and fresh water for no less than 72 hours. If you failed to do this, PODS (Points of Distribution) will be setup shortly after the storm. Listen to your radio for locations. Most will provide tarps, MRE type food, and drinking water.

Pinellas County Emergency Guide:

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