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Brady Smith , AICP
4000 Gateway Centre Blvd.
Pinellas Park, Florida 33782
Phone: (727)570-5151 ext. 42
County Hurricane Guides, Evacuation Maps & Shelter Lists
These are the official hurricane guides and evacuation zone maps for the counties in the Tampa Bay Region. A hurricane evacuation will be ordered by Level (A, B, C, D or E) as shown on these color-coded maps. The maps also show the location of evacuation routes and public shelters.
The evacuation plans in the Tampa Bay region call for one of five evacuation levels. These are called Evacuation Levels A, B, C, D, or E. Each level requires the evacuation of successively more zones inland. All structures will be affected by the hurricane-force winds. However, mobile homes residents are extremely vulnerable.
If you need assistance in locating your zone, evacuation route, or evacuation shelter, please contact your county's Emergency Management office.
2011 County Evacuation Zone Maps (PDF)
2011 County Shelter Lists and Other Information (PDF)
For Media Use - Print-Quality Hurricane Guides WITH EVACUATION MAPS
These are higher-resolution PDF versions of the Official 2011 Hurricane Guide for the Tampa Bay Region that are designed for large-format printers. Page 1 of each PDF includes the cover and comprehensive hurricane preparedness information. Page 2 includes the county evacuation zone map, county shelter list, and other county-specific information. These files are relatively large (~15 to 40 MB). The resolution is 300 dpi, color format is CMYK, and document size is 36" x 23".
RECENT Changes to the Hurricane Evacuation Maps
A number of changes were made in the evacuation zone maps prior to the 2010 hurricane season. In 2010, a significant number of residents had their evacuation level change from previous years. These changes are due to improvements and enhancements of the SLOSH (Sea, Lake, Overland, Surge from Hurricanes) model. This program, used by the National Hurricane Center, FEMA, and local emergency managers, is a valuable tool when determining areas vulnerable to storm surge.
We know hurricanes are not always "well-behaved" in their track or "average" in their size and forward speed. For example, in 2005, Hurricane Katrina was a Category 3 storm at landfall, yet produced a higher storm surge than catastrophic Category 5 Hurricane Camille in 1969. In 2008, Hurricnae Ike, a large Category 2 storm, brought 24 feet of surge to parts of the Texas coast. Faster computers allow modelers to consider a greater number of storm scenarios than in the past. By simulating more than 13,000 hypothetical storms in the SLOSH model, more scenarios may be considered when facing a real-life storm threat headed our way.
Also beginning in 2010, a different color scheme was used to depict the evacuation zones on the hurricane evacuation maps. This is not accidental. Emergency management officials want to emphasize the danger level within each zone. If you live or work along the coast in Evacuation Level A (red), you are at a serious risk from storm surge in a Category 1 hurricane, and you could receive over 28 feet of storm surge in a Category 5 hurricane with violent wave action along the coast. While the surge depth is reduced as the storm moves inland, remember that moving water just 18 inches deep will likely sweep an adult off his or her feet.