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Commander Orders Evacuation of US Military Base Ahead of Florida Hurricane

CC0 / scattered1 / Aerial View of MacDill Air Force Base near Tampa, Florida
Aerial View of MacDill Air Force Base near Tampa, Florida - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.09.2022
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The commander of MacDill Air Force Base in Florida ordered an evacuation of the installation on Monday morning in preparation for the landfall of Hurricane Ian, which is expected to hit the state’s Gulf coast in the coming days.
"Col. [Adam] Bingham has issued an installation-wide mandatory evacuation to be completed by Tues. 27 Sep @ 1200L for non-mission essential individuals, including uniformed service members/dependents," MacDill AFB said in a statement via social media.
MacDill AFB, located near Tampa, is home to the headquarters of both US Central Command and US Special Operations Command, as well as Air Force elements. The base in the statement also urged service members to monitor local news outlets for updates on the situation.
Dark clouds from Tropical Storm Elsa loom over Venice Fishing Pier at Brohard Park at Venice Beach, Florida, U.S. July 6, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.09.2022
Biden Declares State of Emergency in Florida Due to Tropical Storm Ian
A "life-threatening storm surge" is possible along much of Florida’s west coast, with the highest risk between Fort Myers and Tampa Bay, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Hurricane Center (NHC).
Hurricane-force winds could begin Wednesday morning, with tropical storm conditions possible by late Tuesday, NHC said on Monday in an advisory. Residents in the expected path of the hurricane should ensure they have a plan, NHC also said.
Heavy rainfall is expected across Florida from Tuesday to Thursday, potentially causing flash, urban and small stream flooding, NHC said. Significant prolonged river flooding is likely across central Florida, NHC added.
US President Joe Biden on Saturday declared a state of emergency in Florida and ordered federal assistance be provided to local authorities. The hurricane caused NASA to postpone its Artemis 1 unmanned moon mission, which was scheduled for Tuesday from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
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