They're getting out of the way of what could be the strongest storm to hit Florida in years. The mood is optimistic, but at the same time very concerned.
The director of Florida Emergency Operations Center, Craig Fugate, says Hurricane Frances is a life or death situation. People need to listen to the many warnings coming from this center and many just like it all over the state.
"I can tell you we have a very large dangerous hurricane coming toward our state. We are preparing to help our citizens,” Fugate explains.
Fugate also says the best thing people can do before Frances hits is help themselves.
"We're really looking at life safety, not trying to avoid the impacts of the storm, but really life safety. You want to make sure you have supplies on hand including medications. You want to make sure you're stocked up,” adds Fugate.
At the Emergency Operation Center all eyes are on the east coast, bracing for impact, but the rest of the state is also under alert.
"People in the Panhandle, Big Bend, Tallahassee area, it’s not too early to start monitoring the storm, making sure you're prepared. Frances is large and powerful, it bears watching. This storm may threaten our area,” Fugate warns.
Fugate also says that the EOC doesn't look at the eye, and neither should anyone else. He warns that if people are making decisions whether or not to evacuate based on the eye location, you could be endangering your life.