Mar 16, 2024

LISTEN: Ahead of Idalia, A Sandbag How

TAMPA -- With Tropical Storm and likely Hurricane Idalia aiming at Florida's west coast from the Yucatan, forecasters are calling for 3-5 foot storm surge in the Tampa Bay area, as well as higher numbers farther north, plus several inches of rain. Flooding is a possibility in coastal and other low-lying areas.

Several Tampa Bay area communities are offering sandbags, either pre-filled or dig your own. As for how to use them, Mikah Collins with Hillsborough County government says the purpose of the sandbag is to be a weight. Before you put your bags down, you should place plastic tarps or sheeting on the doors where you plan to use them. Make sure the plastic goes from doorsill to doorsill and then all the way to the bottom and beyond, sitting flat on the ground. Then you start stacking.

Collins recommended laying down about 3-4 bags flat against the doorway, then stacking in a pyramid shape, as tight as possible with no cracks or gaps.

Collins says the stack should be 3-4 bags high depending on how much flooding you expect. Listen to more tips from Collins in the podcast below:

Here's a list of some communities offering bags to residents. Most sites limit you to 10 each and you have to show proof of residency in that county or city.

Hillsborough County: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday. Residents are asked not to arrive at one of the four locations before 9 a.m.

Pinellas County: Available Monday 12n-6p, limited to 10 per vehicle, fill up bags


John Chesnut Park in Palm Harbor and Walsingham Park in Seminole

City of Clearwater: Monday 9a-2p or until supply runs out, at the Joe DiMaggio Sports Complex, 2450 Drew Street

City of Tampa: Distribution sites open daily 8a-7p until further notice

Himes Avenue Complex, 4501 S. Himes, Al Barnes Park 2902 N 32nd Street, and

MacFarlane Park 1700 N MacDill Avenue, Tampa 33607

City of St. Petersburg -

7 am to 7 pm Monday

Northeast Park 955 62nd Avenue NE

Lake Maggiore Shelter 3601 ML King St S

Northwest Swimming Pool Parking Lot - 2331 60th Street North

Pasco County: (self serve open 24-7)

- Magnolia Valley Golf Course 7223 Massachusetts Avenue, New Port Richey

- Pasco County Public Works 30908 Warder Road, San Antonio

Dade City:

Old Police Department Building 38042 Pasco Avenue

Port Richey:

Police Station, Dispatch Office Bring Shovel 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Manatee County: (beginning Monday 9 am till further notice)

Manatee Beach, 4000 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach 34217

Coquina Beach 2650 Gulf Drive Bradenton Beach 34217

Bayfront Park 310 North Bay Blvd. Anna Maria Island 34216

Rubonia 1309 72nd St E Palmetto 34221

66th Street West Fleet Building 4700 66th Street West Bradenton 34210

Pride Park 6032 9th Street East Bradenton 34203

Polk County: · (8 am - 6 pm Monday)

Mulberry - 900 NE 5th St., Mulberry, (863) 519-4734

· Lakeland - 8970 N. Campbell Road, Lakeland (863) 815-6701

· Fort Meade - 1061 NE 9th St., Fort Meade (863) 285-6588

· Frostproof - 350 County Road 630A, Frostproof (863) 635-7879

· Auburndale - 1701 Holt Road, Auburndale (863) 965-5524

· Dundee - 805 Dr. Martin Luther King St. SW, Dundee, (863) 421-3367

· Poinciana Park - 5109 Allegany Road, Kissimmee 34759

Photo: Canva

Listen to the podcast with Mikah Collins below:

Hillsborough County: Pinellas County:City of Clearwater: City of Tampa:City of St. Petersburg - Pasco County: Dade City:Port Richey:Manatee County: (beginning Monday 9 am till further notice) Polk County: ·