Broward County declares state of emergency

Mayor Mark Bogen says shelters not open at this time

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor, Amy Viteri - Investigative Reporter

PLANTATION, Fla. - Broward County declared a state of emergency Friday afternoon ahead of Hurricane Dorian.

"It gives our county administrator the authority to direct an evacuation of appropriate areas, if it's needed," Broward County Mayor Mark Bogen said ahead of the announcement. "It gives our county administrator the authority to impose a curfew, if it's needed. It allows us to require commercial establishments to close if they're in imminent danger. It allows us to close public places, streets, alleys, parks, beaches and schools."

Bogen said it also prohibits price-gouging of "any essential commodity," even though there is already a state law already in place.

He also said Publix and other grocery stores are being restocked with food and water.

"So if it wasn't available yesterday, you can still try today," Bogen said.

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Bogen also reminded residents to bring in any outdoor or patio furniture "knowing that a hurricane is coming this way."

He said shelters are not open at this time.

"I think in 24 hours we'll have a better idea," Bogen said.

Currently, the Broward County Emergency Operations Center is operating at a level 2 and Bogen said the next 24 hours will be critical in determining where Dorian will go and what steps are next for the county. 

"Yesterday they predicted the storm would hit us at the earliest Saturday night. Today the storm is not going to be here until at least Sunday night, Monday. So it gives us at least another 24 hours to prepare," Bogen said. 

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