In my five years living in Florida from 2001-2006, several tropical storms and hurricanes hit the state. Most memorable, sadly, was Tropical Storm Gabrielle, which made landfall in Sarasota County just three days after 9/11. At the time I was a 24-year-old news producer working on the morning newscast at WTSP-TV, the CBS affiliate in the Tampa/St. Pete market. We went from previewing President Bush’s visit to Sarasota (which was part of our DMA) on the morning of 9/11, to then covering the attack on our country and the aftermath, only to then have to abruptly shift gears to report on the serious weather threat.
To say it was an emotionally taxing week would be a colossal understatement.
Hurricanes are a perpetual seasonal risk for the Sunshine State, and unfortunately it looks as of this writing that Hurricane Matthew is going to strike by either late Thursday night or early Friday morning. So, with that in mind, tonight I have some legal IDs from several different markets in Florida: Fort Pierce, Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Sarasota, and Tampa/St. Petersburg.
Stay safe, Florida…