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CONCERT RECAP

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How to take advantage of Florida's hurricane sales tax holiday

Hurricane season is here, and right now people in Florida can stock up on storm necessities without paying sales tax.

>> Watch the news report here

>> Florida’s 10 safest cities in a hurricane

Florida’s Disaster Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday runs through Thursday, June 7.

>> 5 things to know before hurricane season

Some of the qualifying items include: 

  • Reusable ice (selling for $10 or less)
  • Candles, flashlights, lanterns, and any portable self-powered light source powered by battery, solar, hand-crank or gas (selling for $20 or less)
  • Any gas or diesel fuel container, including LP gas and kerosene containers (selling for $30 or less)
  • Nonelectrical coolers and ice chests for food storage ($30 or less)
  • Bungee cords ($50 or less)
  • Ground anchor systems ($50 or less)
  • Radios (two-way or weather band) powered by battery, solar, or hand crank ($50 or less)
  • Ratchet straps ($50 or less)
  • Tarps ($50 or less)
  • Tie-down kits ($50 or less)
  • Visqueen, plastic sheeting, plastic drop cloths, and other flexible waterproof sheeting ($50 or less)
  • Portable generators that can be used for light, communications, or to preserve food in the event of a power outage ($750 or less)

>> Hurricane evacuation: Helpful apps for finding gas, hotel rooms, traffic routes

Food and other canned goods are not included in the tax holiday.

>> Read more trending news 

Click here to read the complete list of qualifying items and restrictions.

What is a Subtropical Storm?

What is a Subtropical Storm?

Subtropical Storm Alberto: Gov. Rick Scott declares state of emergency in Florida

Governor Rick Scott issued Executive Order 18-150 on Saturday, declaring a state of emergency in all 67 Florida counties as the state continues to monitor and prepare for Subtropical Storm Alberto.

DOWNLOAD: WFTV Weather app

>> Read more trending news 

By declaring this state of emergency, Scott's office said he is ensuring that state and local government has ample time, resources and flexibility to get prepared for this storm, WFTV reported.

What is a subtropical storm?

Scott said, “As we continue to monitor Subtropical Storm Alberto’s northward path toward Florida, it is critically important that all Florida counties have every available resource to keep families safe and prepare for the torrential rain and severe flooding this storm will bring. Today, I have declared a state of emergency in all 67 Florida counties to make sure that our state and local governments are able to coordinate with federal partners to get the resources they need. Yesterday, I directed the State Emergency Operations Center activate to Level 2 and I will continue to be in constant communication with state and local emergency management officials as this storm approaches Florida.

TALKING THE TROPICS WITH MIKE: Alberto forms near Yucatan Peninsula - stays west of Jacksonville - heavy rain for local area 

“If any Florida family doesn’t have an emergency preparedness plan, now is the time to act. Remember, the track of these storms can change without notice. Do not think that only areas in the cone will be impacted – everyone in our state must be prepared. I encourage every Floridian to visit FloridaDisaster.org and get your plan before this storm hits so you can keep your family safe. We will continue to provide updates to Florida’s residents and visitors and do everything to prepare for and respond to this storm.”

READ: Alberto to drench Memorial Day weekend plans

FOLLOW: Live WFTV weather radar

CONTACTS• The State Assistance Information Line (SAIL) contact number is 1-800-342-3557. • Follow @FLSert or @FLGovScott on Twitter for live updates.• Visit floridadisaster.org to find information on shelters, road closures, and evacuation routes. 

Click here for local and nationwide hurricane news, tracking maps, photos, video, satellite, radar, alerts, blogs and storm preparation guide.

5 hacks to keep your smartphone charged during a power outage

A smartphone can be a lifeline in a storm, but it's useless without power. Fortunately, there's never been more ways to keep a smartphone juiced up

>> Read more trending news

Here are some easy ways to keep your phone in the green if you lose power: 

1. Charge up every laptop in your home. If you lose power, turn a laptop on (but don't unlock the screen) and use your iPhone or Android cable to charge your phone via the USB ports. Most newer laptops can charge a smartphone multiple times. 

2. Keep your phone on "Low Power Mode." This setting will use far less juice. On an iPhone, go to "Settings," scroll down to "Battery" and turn on "Low Power Mode." On an Android, swipe down from the top menu and find the "Power Saving" icon. 

3. Use your car to charge your phone. Most newer cars have a USB port – or two. Even if your car is out of fuel, you can turn it on and charge it using the car battery. It's a last resort, but if you have a newer car battery, it will charge a phone multiple times easily.

4. Buy an external charger if you don't have one; most drug stores have them. Portable smartphone battery chargers are getting better and less expensive. Most drug store chains have them near the counter, but you will pay more for the convenience. But if you need one right now, that is a good place to look. 

Companies such as Anker and Aukey sell high-quality, high capacity chargers on Amazon. Consider buying one before the next storm. Some of the new one have capacities approaching 30,000 mAh, which is enough to charge an phone over five times. 

5. Still have power but want to charge a phone quickly without using a wall socket? Plug it into the USB port on your TV. Most newer TVs have one. 

Bread and milk: Why do we panic-buy those foods before a storm?

 

 

Whenever severe winter weather approaches, grocery store aisles are always clear of eggs, bread and milk.

But why is that the case?

>> Read more trending storiesThe CDC recommends bread as a no-cook food to stock ahead of a storm, but not perishables like milk and eggs. A power outage means those foods may not last until the storm passes.

The Atlantic reported that buying perishables may be a matter of psychology.

Duke University behavioral economist Dan Ariely said it’s a matter of seeing others doing something and feeling the need to join in. “If we go somewhere and we see other people buying those particular things, all of a sudden (we’re) even more interested in those (things),” he said.

“It’s like saying, ‘The storm will be over soon and I won’t be stuck in this situation for long,’” clinical psychologist Judy Rosenburg told HowStuffWorks.

So it may be fine to get bread, milk and eggs as long as you have enough non-perishable foods as well.

          

Family emergency supply kit must-haves

Emergency Supplies:

Water, food, and clean air are important things to have if an emergency happens. Each family or individual's kit should be customized to meet specific needs, such as medications and infant formula. It should also be customized to include important family documents..

Recommended Supplies to Include in a Basic Kit:

     
  • Water, one gallon of water per person per day, for drinking and sanitation
  • Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert, and extra batteries for both
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First Aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Infant formula and diapers, if you have an infant
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Dust mask or cotton t-shirt, to help filter the air
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)

Clothing and Bedding:

If you live in a cold weather climate, you must think about warmth. It is possible that the power will be out and you will not have heat. Rethink your clothing and bedding supplies to account for growing children and other family changes. One complete change of warm clothing and shoes per person, including:

     
  • A jacket or coat
  • Long pants
  • A long sleeve shirt
  • Sturdy shoes
  • A hat and gloves
  • A sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person

Below are some other items for your family to consider adding to its supply kit. Some of these items, especially those marked with a * can be dangerous, so please have an adult collect these supplies.

     
  • Emergency reference materials such as a first aid book or a print out of the information on www.ready.gov
  • Rain gear
  • Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils
  • Cash or traveler's checks, change
  • Paper towels
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Tent
  • Compass
  • Matches in a waterproof container*
  • Signal flare*
  • Paper, pencil
  • Personal hygiene items including feminine supplies
  • Disinfectant*
  • Household chlorine bleach* - You can use bleach as a disinfectant (diluted nine parts water to one part bleach), or in an emergency you can also use it to treat water. Use 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.
  • Medicine dropper
  • Important Family Documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container

9 weather terms you should know when preparing for a hurricane

Whenever a hurricane is poised to strike a region, there are several terms meteorologists use that might not be familiar.

>> Read more trending news

Here are common ones you should know as you keep your eye on the storm’s path: 

Feeder band

Lines or bands of low-level clouds that move (feed) into the upper region of a thunderstorm, usually from the east through south.

This term also is used in tropical meteorology to describe spiral-shaped bands of convection surrounding, and moving toward, the center of a tropical cyclone.

Squalls

When the wind speed increases to at least 16 knots and is sustained at 22 knots or more for at least one minute.

Storm surge

An abnormal rise in sea level accompanying a hurricane or other intense storm. The height is the difference between the normal level of the sea surface and the level that would have occurred in the absence of the cyclone. Storm surge is usually estimated by subtracting the normal or astronomic high tide from the observed storm tide.

>> Related: What is storm surge and why is it dangerous? 

Eye wall

An organized band or ring of clouds that surround the eye, or light-wind center, of a tropical cyclone. Eye wall and wall cloud are used synonymously.

Sustained winds

Wind speed determined by averaging observed values over a two-minute period.

Computer models

Meteorologists use computer models to figure out a storm’s path and its potential path. The models are based on typical weather patterns.

Advisory

Official information describing all tropical cyclone watches and warnings in effect along with details concerning tropical cyclone locations, intensity and movement, and precautions that should be taken.

Hurricane watch

An announcement that sustained winds of 74 mph or higher are possible. Because hurricane preparedness activities become difficult once winds reach tropical storm force, the hurricane watch is issued 48 hours in advance of the anticipated onset of tropical-storm-force winds.

Hurricane warning

An announcement that sustained winds of 74 mph or higher are expected somewhere within the specified area in association with a cyclone. Because hurricane preparedness activities become difficult once winds reach tropical storm force, the warning is issued 36 hours in advance. The warning can remain in effect when dangerously high water or high water and waves continue, even though winds may be less than hurricane force.

Florida's 10 safest cities in a hurricane

There’s really no place that’s 100 percent safe in Florida when it comes to hurricanes.

Even Orlando got hit twice in 2004 by hurricanes Charley and Frances.

>> Read more trending news

And, although Florida enjoyed a more than 10-year hurricane drought after 2005’s Hurricane Wilma, Hurricane Hermine made landfall in the Florida Panhandle in 2016. 

Still, Homeinsurance.com has ranked Florida’s cities based on their evaluation of NOAA-identified storms from 1965 to October 2014, doling out scores based on the number of storm events, number of storm-related deaths, property damage and storm-related injuries.

The top 10 safest cities in Florida during a hurricane, according to the insurance study, are:

  1. Leesburg
  2. Orlando
  3. Sanford
  4. Kissimmee
  5. Palatka
  6. Lake City
  7. Naples
  8. Ocala
  9. Gainesville
  10. Fernandina Beach

The entire ranking is below.

Read more about the Home Insurance study here.

WATCH: Pollen cloud springs from tree in sneeze-worthy viral video

Look away, allergy sufferers: This viral video from New Jersey might bring you to tears.

On Monday, Facebook user Jennifer Henderson shared a clip of a backhoe tapping a tree in Millville – and the enormous pollen cloud that followed.

>> See the video here

>> Read more trending news 

"When my husband said the pollen's bad, I probably should've taken his word for it. Crazy!" Henderson wrote

As of Wednesday morning, the post had been viewed nearly 3 million times with 93,000 shares.

What You Need to Know: Volcanoes

What You Need to Know: Volcanoes
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