STATEWIDE REGIONAL EVACUATION STUDY PROGRAM
In 2004 and 2005, Florida experienced an unprecedented level of tropical storm activity. In 2004, Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne impacted our State. Hurricanes Dennis, Katrina, Rita and Wilma came ashore in Florida in 2005. In the short span of 24 months, millions of Florida residents were impacted, and property damages ran into the billions of dollars.
In response to these devastating hurricane seasons, state legislators passed House Bill 1721 and House Bill 1359, which identified enhanced statewide hurricane evacuation planning and a redefinition of the coastal high hazard area as state priorities. In accordance with this legislative direction, the State of Florida Division of Emergency Management obtained grant money through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Grant Program to conduct regional evacuation studies across the State.
The Florida Division of Emergency Management (DEM) contracted with Florida's Regional Planning Councils to carry out the Statewide Regional Evacuation Study Program (SRESP), in close collaboration with county emergency management agencies. The Regional Planning Councils facilitated consistent and integrated mapping and analysis of all-hazards evacuation across Florida.
In the Withlacoochee Region, this multi-year project resulted in a comprehensive regional evacuation study update that encompasses Citrus, Hernando, Levy, Marion and Sumter counties and is integrated with similar work being completed by the Tampa Bay and North Central Florida regions. As part of the statewide study, the DEM managed a separate contract for the production of updated Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) elevation data, which was completed for about 28,000 square miles across the State of Florida. Processing of the LiDAR data and preparation of the data for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Hurricane Center (NHC) was completed in May 2009. New Sea, Lake and Overland Surge from Hurricanes (SLOSH) modeling was then completed for the SLOSH basin involved in the update for the Region: the Cedar Key SLOSH basin. Additional information about the LiDAR and SLOSH project is available on the Florida Division of Emergency Management website at www.floridadisaster.org/gis/lidar.
Although hurricanes are a prominent concern in the studies, the framework is being established for an "all hazards" analysis in order to support planning efforts to prepare for other types of evacuations as well, such as inland flooding or wildfires. These studies are not policy documents - instead, they are intended to provide support for future updates to local government emergency management plans. The completed study will consist of 88 volumes of material (8 from each of the 11 regions across the state).
Phase I of the evacuation study consisted of the following:
* A systematic enumeration and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) mapping of the dwelling units, population, vehicles and socio-economic characteristics for the three counties and the region, as well as the projected population within those areas in the years 2006, 2010 and 2015. (Demographic Analysis)
* A comprehensive analysis of the potential hazards to the Withlacoochee region, including investigations of storm surge, tornadoes, flooding, hazardous sites, terrorism and nuclear facilities, and critical facilities inventory. (Hazards Analysis)
* A systematic investigation of the probable tendencies of potential future evacuees based on a detailed residential survey. (Behavioral Analysis)
* A region-wide inventory of existing public shelters and shelter capacity analysis, and geocoding of the data to create a statewide layer of shelter locations. (Shelter Analysis)
* Establishment of a regional evacuation transportation network which links existing county-level evacuation routes and any additional arterials/collectors in the region.
Phase II of the study included the following:
* The delineation of the storm tide limits and the evacuation zones, identification of population-at-risk and evacuation populations, and storm surge analysis of critical facilities. (Vulnerability Analysis)
* Estimates of vehicle movements based on demographic data, evacuation zones, and the regional evacuation transportation network. (Transportation Analysis)
* The development of a Toolkit for County Emergency Managers which includes quick reference materials, such as evacuation maps, clearance time tables, and shelter information.
A Storm Tide Atlas was created for Citrus, Hernando, and Levy Counties, coastal counties within the Region. These atlases identify areas subject to potential storm surge flooding from a Tropical Storm, and hurricanes, Categories 1 through 5. A Depth Analysis Atlas was also created, depicting possible ranges of surge depth for hurricanes, Categories 1 through 5, for Citrus, Hernando, and Levy Counties.
The Withlacoochee Regional Planning Council convened state and county emergency management and growth management officials at its Ocala office to officially release the Withlacoochee Region's part of the SRESP.
The completed volumes for the Withlacoochee Region are listed below, with links for downloading the published documents. Please note, some of the documents are very large, as they contain maps and other figures.
Volume 1: Technical Data Report
Chapter I: Regional Demographic and Land Use Analysis
Appendix I-A Citrus County
Appendix I-B Hernando County
Appendix I-C Levy County
Appendix I-D Marion County
Appendix I-E Sumter County
Chapter II: Regional Hazards Analysis
Chapter III: Regional Behavioral Analysis Summary
Chapter IV: Regional Vulnerability and Population Analysis
Appendix IV-A Citrus County
Appendix IV-B Hernando County
Appendix IV-C Levy County
Appendix IV-D Marion County
Appendix IV-E Sumter County
Chapter V: Regional Shelter Analysis
Chapter VI: Regional Evacuation Transportation Analysis
Volume 2: Regional Behavioral Analysis
Volume 3: Regional Behavioral Survey Report
Volume 4: Evacuation Transportation Analysis
Volume 5: Evacuation Transportation Supplemental Data Report
Volume 6: County Emergency Management Toolkit (for County Emergency Manager use only)
Volume 7: Storm Tide Atlas
Book 1 of 3: Citrus County
Book 2 of 3: Hernando County
Book 3 of 3: Levy County
Volume 8: Methodology and Support Documentation
Methodoloy and Support Documentation
Volume 9: Surge Depth Atlas
Citrus County Surge Depth Front Matter
Citrus County Surge Depth, Category 1
Citrus County Surge Depth, Category 2
Citrus County Surge Depth, Category 3
Citrus County Surge Depth, Category 4
Citrus County Surge Depth, Category 5
Hernando County Surge Depth Front Matter
Hernando County Surge Depth, Category 1
Hernando County Surge Depth, Category 2
Hernando County Surge Depth, Category 3
Hernando County Surge Depth, Category 4
Hernando County Surge Depth, Category 5
Levy County Surge Depth Front Matter
Levy County Surge Depth, Category 1
Levy County Surge Depth, Category 2
Levy County Surge Depth, Category 3
Levy County Surge Depth, Category 4
Levy County Surge Depth, Category 5
For Further Information:
Contact Lauren Yeatter, Principal Planner, at email@example.com.