CLEARWATER, Fla. - The red phone, long a symbol of urgency, sits quiet in the Pinellas County Emergency Operations Center. For now, EOC officials are closely monitoring the movement of Tropical Storm Isaac. And they say you should too.
Tom Iovino with Pinellas County said, "This is a threat right now. This is the perfect time to go through your hurricane kit and make sure you have your hurricane plan put together. Because once that storm starts coming in, we can't put a pause button on the disaster and get you ready."
But with hoards of delegates descending on Pinellas County for the Republican National Convention, evacuating them from the beaches is a concern.
"There have been plans put in place from the beginning with the Republican Convention folks as far as what happens should a tropical threat appear and how to handle the delegates," explained Iovino.
The Alden Suites on St. Pete Beach will host delegates from Nebraska and Guam. RNC officials are tight-lipped about what contingency plans they have in place.
If an evacuation order is given, RNC delegates will be treated like any other hotel guest.
"It's no different, we're going to contact them. We put fliers out. We talk to them individually. We'll tell them what they can and can't do. So it's not really going to be any different just because they're RNC delegates," said Tony Satterfield, V.P. of Operations at Alden Suites.
Back in June, Tropical Storm Debby soaked the bay area and RNC organizers took notice.
"Tropical Storm Debby gave them a great dry run recently. So they had a chance to see what would happen in the event of a tropical system coming in," said Iovino.
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