As Hurricane Michael Nears, Here are the Applicable Florida Emergency Gun Laws


With Hurricane Michael bearing down, Governor Scott has declared a state of emergency for 26 Florida panhandle counties via Executive Order 18-276. If a mandatory evacuation order is issued, residents in the affected counties can carry concealed firearms without a CCW permit in accordance with Florida Statute 790.01 Unlicensed carrying of concealed weapons or concealed firearms.

(a) A person who carries a concealed weapon, or a person who may lawfully possess a firearm and who carries a concealed firearm, on or about his or her person while in the act of evacuating during a mandatory evacuation order issued during a state of emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to chapter 252 or declared by a local authority pursuant to chapter 870. As used in this subsection, the term “in the act of evacuating” means the immediate and urgent movement of a person away from the evacuation zone within 48 hours after a mandatory evacuation is ordered. The 48 hours may be extended by an order issued by the Governor.

Openly carrying firearms, however, is still illegal except under very specific circumstances such as when you’re on your personal property. Do not think that you can walk around your neighborhood with your AR slung across your back or while standing in line at a relief center for an MRE or a bottle of water.

Best advice: keep your firearms concealed and don’t dress in a manner to attract attention.

Also under declared states of emergency, firearm and ammunition sales are banned.

870.043 Declaration of emergency

Whenever the sheriff or designated city official determines that there has been an act of violence or a flagrant and substantial defiance of, or resistance to, a lawful exercise of public authority and that, on account thereof, there is reason to believe that there exists a clear and present danger of a riot or other general public disorder, widespread disobedience of the law, and substantial injury to persons or to property, all of which constitute an imminent threat to public peace or order and to the general welfare of the jurisdiction affected or a part or parts thereof, he or she may declare that a state of emergency exists within that jurisdiction or any part or parts thereof.

870.044 Automatic emergency measures

Whenever the public official declares that a state of emergency exists, pursuant to s. 870.043, the following acts shall be prohibited during the period of said emergency throughout the jurisdiction:
(1) The sale of, or offer to sell, with or without consideration, any ammunition or gun or other firearm of any size or description.
(2) The intentional display, after the emergency is declared, by or in any store or shop of any ammunition or gun or other firearm of any size or description.
(3) The intentional possession in a public place of a firearm by any person, except a duly authorized law enforcement official or person in military service acting in the official performance of her or his duty..

Nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed to authorize the seizure, taking, or confiscation of firearms that are lawfully possessed, unless a person is engaged in a criminal act.

252.36 Emergency management powers of the Governor

(h) Suspend or limit the sale, dispensing, or transportation of alcoholic beverages, firearms, explosives, and combustibles. However, nothing contained in ss. 252.31252.90 shall be construed to authorize the seizure, taking, or confiscation of firearms that are lawfully possessed, unless a person is engaged in the commission of a criminal act.

On the personal side, I’m in the affected area and am preparing as best as I can. As a resident of the big bend area, I’m directly in the storm’s path.

The yard and outside area around the house has been cleared of anything that could become flying debris. Hurricane shutters and plywood panels are being put up. Sandbags have also been staged for use just in case.

My wife and I had our hurricane preps stacked up long before the season even started. We don’t go crazy for food, water, and medical supplies right before a storm is predicted to impact us.

Courtesy of A. Valdes

Our generator and jerry cans are topped off, as is our truck and sedan. Also my squad car is ready for the eventual call out that always happens after a hurricane hits. We even go as far as having a portable A/C unit just for the master bedroom so we can sleep comfortably when we lose power.

Hurricane Hermine – Courtesy of A. Valdes

In regards to personal safety, both off and on duty. We keep ourselves at the ready in case some rogue ne’er-do-well decided to target our home or one of our neighbor’s as a five finger discount shopping mart.

Hurricane Hermine – Courtesy of A. Valdes

As for the general mood of the area. The gas stations in Tallahassee are already starting to run low and folks are making runs on the local supermarkets.

Tallahassee, FL Gas Station, Courtesy of A. Valdes

Tallahassee, FL Costco

The key to all of this, of course, is to prepare. I had these supplies in place long before Hurricane Michael was a gleam in the National Weather Service’s eye. An ounce of prevention is absolutely worth a hundred pounds of cure.

The key to getting through an emergency situation such as this is having the supplies and goods on hand before the panic. Right now, less-aware people are clamoring for everything; cases of water and gas cans are few and far between on store shelves. People everywhere are stressed and trying to get gas. Costco, Walmart, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, and Lowe’s are sold out of generators.

As always, Florida has a tax-free holiday every year at the start of hurricane season (this year’s was from June 1 through June 7, 2018). They do this for a very good reason. Survival essentials like generators, batteries, radios, and other hurricane-related items are sold tax-free.

In the end I hope and pray that this storm weakens and doesn’t hit us hard.

Courtesy of A. Valdes

Floridians need to stay safe, stay armed, and be ready to help yourself and your neighbors. Just as in the Carolinas, let’s show the world what being American is all about; stepping up to the plate when it’s needed and helping each other out in a bad situation.



  1. avatar TruthTellers says:

    While all the focus is going to go on Florida, after Michael weakens it’s going over the same parts of the Carolinas that Florence drenched.

    1. avatar rdsii64 says:

      I live in eastern NC. Right in the area the Florence dumped on. I’m watching Micheal. I’m as prepared as my situation will allow. I’m praying for the folks in Fla.

  2. avatar T-town citizen says:

    I live in Tallahassee and also hope this storm weakens. I’m prepared but unfortunately do not have a generator. During Hermine we went several days with no power. Hopefully our idiot Mayor Andrew Gillum doesn’t screw up like last time when he refused help from power line workers.

    1. avatar Luis Valdes says:

      I believe he’ll refuse help from FPL again and will also direct TalGov to not hook up the Governor’s Mansion again too.

      1. avatar T-town citizen says:

        It will be interesting to see how these politicians respond with the election near. Can’t say I would be too disappointed if Gov. Scott went without power after his bump stock/age ban. But we all know he will be nice and comfortable during the storm. Same for Gillum.

      2. avatar Geoff "Mess with the Bull, get the Horns" PR says:

        “I believe he’ll refuse help from FPL again…”

        Just like the mayor of New Orleans, Ray Nagan, I’m sure Gillum will approach this storm like the last one – With a spirit of “I’ve got this” and ignoring outside help. To the detriment of his constituents.

        Leftists make me sick…

  3. avatar FlamencoD says:

    I’m a prepper “light”; at the moment I have about 2.5 weeks worth of water (more if we use it only for drinking) and a month+ worth of food for my family. I want to get my food and water supply to 6-7 weeks. I also have plenty of first aid supplies, but nothing too serious (i.e., no antibiotics or IVs). I have a host of other supplies and other types of survival items, and yes, enough guns and ammo.

    That said, if I knew a disaster was coming my way, right now, I’d probably make a grocery run to bolster my food and water stock as they are below where I feel they should be. I don’t live in a hurricane affected area.

    1. avatar Gralnok says:

      More than what I have. I’ve got plenty of ammo and dried food, but I’m low on other things. Unfortunately, being on meds, means I can’t stock up on vital medication. “We’re sorry, but it’s too soon to refill your prescription.” Stupid Walgreens.

      1. avatar M10 says:

        @Gralnok, if you run your prescriptions through a mail order company, like Express Scripts, they always fill them as a 90 day supply. You may be able to also request your Dr prescribe a 90 day supply at your local R/X

      2. avatar LazrBeam says:

        It’s prolly not Walgreens but the insurance instead.

  4. avatar New Continental Army says:

    Being a prepper and living in Florida pretty much go hand in hand. I’m glad I picked up the habit before I moved here.

    1. avatar jwm says:

      The need for emergency preps is pretty much world wide. I’ve lived and worked in lots of different places. I’ve experienced ice and snow storms. Tornadoes. Earth quake. Hurricane. And a hail storm in Texas that damaged property and killed an elderly gentleman.

      Food. Water. First aid. Weapons and ammo. Etc. Always have a minimum 2 week supply on hand. And that is a bare minimum. When I lived in an apartment I was able to store away enough for the basics for a month.

      Stay ready. Stay safe.

      1. avatar New Continental Army says:

        Indeed. We’re always 9 meals away from anarchy.

    2. avatar LazrBeam says:

      Maybe the tax free holiday should include firearms and ammo.

  5. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Stay safe down there Luis.

  6. avatar Bigus Dickus says:

    I live in Central Florida and was in the path of last years’ big storm, Irma. After the storm blew through my neighborhood was without power for 4 days. On the evening of day one, after the storm, my neighbor across the street kicked back on his back porch in an outdoor recliner, a tall glass of iced tea, a battery powered radio and his Winchester Model 1897 “Trench Gun”. I camped out on my front porch with my outdoor recliner, a radio and beverage of choice…..and my Mosin complete with bayonet attached (we both also had sidearms on our hips). Just after dusk we began to see unknown folks walking the neighborhood and the occasional car (same one over and over again) going up and down the street, slowly. I was able to watch one group of lovely African-American young gentlemen approach my house from an angle where they couldn’t see me easily. When they saw me, they decided it was a good idea to start cussing me and threatening my home….until I showed them Mr. Mosin. They ran off faster than I have ever seen people run before. A short time later, a ghetto cruiser with 3 black gentlemen pulled into my neighbor’s driveway, pile out and approach his house, cussing him the entire way. They decided to leave quickly when they were invited for a close inspection of the Winchester.

    Be careful up there in the panhandle area, the criminal element are impatiently awaiting the opportunity for mischief.

    PS- After that first night, no problems of any kind were to be had. I wonder if word got around the ‘hood?

  7. avatar Waynefromfl says:

    I’ve my Colt Navy, crossbow and a baseball bat ready and our neighbors have each other’s backs here should trouble come.

    I live only 30 minutes away from tally.

  8. avatar Frank says:

    #1) bottled drinking water, first aid kitn, any medications you need and a firearm
    #2) bottled drinking water,first aid kit, any medications you need and a firearm
    #3) bottled drinking water, first aid kit , any medications you need and a firearm
    4) full tank of gas in the car (and realively high place to park it in case of flooding.

    Seriously most humans don’t need food for a week, and most people don’t live where it is cold enough to actually require alternate heating source.

    There are of course plenty of secondary items you could need or that could make you more comfortable but you can’t go without drinking water. (as little as one liter per day without hot weather and exertion as much as 5 liters per day with hot weather and exertion).

    but if you are housebound in florida for a few days you don’t want to have to go out for water. No many situations result in a significant breakdown of rule of law, but temporary local ones are possible, and having water so you can stay buttoned up if needed, and a firearm is wise.

    I remember my dad telling me about one of the blackouts in NYC when he was a kid. The night everyone was saying “wow, look how calm and well behaved everyone is” — the second night all kinds of shit broke loose.

    1. avatar Shallnot BeInfringed says:

      “most people don’t live where it is cold enough to actually require alternate heating source.”

      Don’t suppose you’ve ever been housebound for three days because the ground-floor doors and windows won’t open, then finally end up climbing out a second-story window to shovel tons of snow away from the doors, have you?

      You might want to reexamine your assumptions there, little prepper… if you believe that most people don’t live where it gets cold, I would urge you to consult a map or an atlas… ever hear of a blizzard? They require a bit different preps than a hurricane does, including a source of heat.

  9. avatar Turd Fergusen says:

    Irma survivor, long time Florida resident. Whole house stationary diesel generator with two weeks of fuel on site. Water, food and ammo for at least that long or more, if necessary.

    In the early 2000s when we had three hurricanes pass through in rapid succession, we sat inside our well lit, air conditioned home while our neighbors sweated it out for nearly a week with no electricity. Several of them came over and wanted to “borrow” some power for their refrigerators and freezers with long extension cords.

    “That will be $50/day for one extension cord, paid in cash up front.”

    Wife thought I was being a total d*ck until almost a week had passed with no power. “It sure pays off when you plan ahead, doesn’t it?” she said after about five days of watching the neighbors swelter in the heat from her air conditioned home. It dawned on her that maybe it was their fault they didn’t plan for such a situation, and that we shouldn’t be the ones to bail them out for their inability to prepare….


  10. avatar Ed Schrade says:

    We had hurricane Harvey stall on our town in south Texas for 6 to 8 hrs. and tore up stuff pretty bad. I hope and pray that the storm named Michael dies down to minimal or even goes to the Atlantic and dies out. Doesn’t look like it so far but I really hate to see another storm wreak havoc on more citizens. Stay safe.

  11. avatar Sobecarlos says:

    Good luck. Having been born in the Caribbean and having moved to Florida almost 53 years ago, I have been through a number of these. Stock up on ice (as a currency), your favorite beverage (some as you stated may not be available), lots of water and non-perishable food. Never ran out of ammunition during a hurricane, but be sure to have a reasonable supply on hand. Actually, never ran out of anything but electricity (and AC by default) and hot water.

  12. avatar Klaus Von Schmitto says:

    The portable AC is the least thought of and at the top of the “nice to have” list. We lost power for 2 days after Irma and it was a Godsend.

  13. avatar B.D. says:

    Fortunately, I moved out of Hurricane alley long ago, but never forgot the preparation for flooding and loss of power. I moved to Oklahoma then (some 15+ years ago) and prepping for Tornado’s began. As a child, it was earthquakes. In the army… well, everything…

    Currently in Montana I prepare for winter, and the SHTF scenarios. I will never have enough stuff. I could have my own fuel station on my land and still want an extra tank stashed somewhere. Same goes for food (a lot of which we grow or fatten livestock/hunt) and first aid.

  14. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Had a snow storm here in ’08. Four days without power. Well, my neighbors were without power. I had a nice supply from my generator, that I converted to run on propane.
    No lost food, forced air furnace, hot water.
    We did just peachy.

  15. avatar Sora says:

    Why SBR when you can have a “Pistol”? You can’t get rifle under 21 in Florida anymore anyway.

    Vote in Rick Scott, then sue the Florida law to the NEW and Improved Supreme Court!
    Send some money to Gun Owners of America and Second Amendment Foundation. They are doing all the lawsuits.

    AND VOTE! VOLUNTEER FOR Voter Drives. Or there will be Governors like in Virgin Islands who ordered gun confiscations before every storm

    1. avatar Bon in FL says:

      Because he probably got that SBR before pistol braces were a thing.

  16. avatar Oscar Cannington says:

    We lost power for 5+ days during the 2016 and 2017 hurricane seasons in Florida. Loss of power is not a big deal. We stayed outside all day working, so the cold shower was welcome. We did lose some frozen food but had plenty to eat. In the evenings we’d sit in the driveway with a box of red wine and talk to neighbors. Opened the windows at night and slept like a baby. A Sony portable radio was our entertainment, or we would just turn it off and enjoy the sounds of the night, uninterrupted for once by the sound of a dozen outside A/C units.

    1. avatar Matt in SC says:

      We lost power from Hugo. That storm hit September 21-22, the eye moved over Charleston right at midnight. We didn’t get power back until the day before Halloween.

  17. avatar Docduracoat says:

    We use battery powered fans when the electricity is out after hurricanes.
    Ice in a big Coleman ice chest lasts 4 days.
    We have plenty of food and water for 4 weeks for all five of us.
    I think the rest of the country will get to us after a hurricane in 2 weeks

  18. avatar pod says:

    I’m wondering about the ‘state of emergency’ laws. When Irma came through here last year, there was a state of emergency in effect. I purchased ammunition and magazines from an FFL with no problem during the state of emergency. Said FFL was open until the very last minute. People were there purchasing guns, as well.

  19. avatar SoBeCarlos says:

    Does 870.043, 3 bar concealed carry with a permit in public during an emergency? I never thought it did.

  20. avatar Tay says:

    The rifle on the left’s forward sling attachment point looks like 550 paracord passed through holes in the handguard. It’s right near the chamber where the barrel gets the hottest, have you shot it much like that? I would expect the nylon sheath on the paracord to melt.

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