Georgia bracing for Hurricane Ian

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ATLANTA – Georgia emergency management officials activated the State Operations Center Monday in anticipation of Hurricane Ian, which is expected to reach Florida’s Gulf Coast later this week before potentially moving into Georgia.

A hurricane watch was in effect Monday along much of Florida’s west coast, including the Tampa Bay area, and some evacuations had been ordered.  Ian is expected to strengthen into a Category 3 hurricane by Monday night and could become a major Category 4 storm by Tuesday, which means winds of 130 to 156 miles per hour.

However, models suggest the hurricane could weaken before making landfall on Thursday. Georgia isn’t expected to see its impact before Friday, with severe damage possible over large parts of the state.

“I urge my fellow Georgians to monitor this storm as it evolves and calmly take the necessary precautions to keep their families and neighbors safe, if the storm continues to intensify,” Gov. Brian Kemp said.

“Throughout the week, I will work closely with [the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency], the weather service, public safety organizations, and others to ensure we leave nothing to chance.”

The governor’s office and emergency management officials are monitoring the path of the storm and will provide updates when appropriate.

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