Tropical Storm Eta moves into the Gulf but will bring wind, rain to Manatee County this week

Tropical Storm Eta moves into the Gulf but will bring wind, rain to Manatee County this week
Posted on 11/09/2020

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (Nov. 9, 2020) – Manatee County officials are asking local residents to monitor news reports and the County's social media accounts closely for developments on the messy, unpredictable Tropical Storm Eta.

As of 10 a.m. Monday, Nov. 9, Manatee County was no longer in a Tropical Storm Warning or Watch area as Eta pushes westward into the Gulf of Mexico. However, after Tuesday, the storm is projected to shift northward, and could bring more strong wind, rain and storm surge to Manatee County.

Public Safety Director Jacob Saur and Emergency Management Chief Steve Litschauer today told local media that Manatee County's barrier islands are most vulnerable to flooding later this week.

"Eta is a wide storm that is going to meander out in the Gulf," Saur said. "As it slowly approaches landfall later this week, we could see localized flooding and strong wind gusts. As it makes its slow turn north to Florida, that messy (northeast) quadrant of the storm will impact our barrier islands and low lying areas. Everyone should clear items from lawns, patios and lanais that could be blown away."

Added Litschauer, "As always, you should have a disaster kit and a plan in place. Pick up loose items around the yard. Fill up with fuel in case we lose power." He pointed out that Manatee County residents can get valuable information on their property, including evacuation zones, at

Saur and Litschauer will deliver their next update tomorrow, Nov. 10 to County Commissioners at 2 p.m. during a regularly scheduled meeting of the Board. Viewers can stream live on the County's Facebook page and on

The public COVID-19 testing site at the Bradenton Area Convention center remains open and will only close when strong winds/rain arrive. In the event of a weather-related closure, the testing site manager says they will reopen as quickly as conditions allow. Manatee County has no plans to open public shelters or to distribute sandbags at this time. Those plans are subject to change when the storm begins its turn north late Tuesday or early Wednesday. (NOTE: Holmes Beach [City Hall] and Longboat Key [Broadway Beach] will make sandbags available to their residents this week.)