Over 1,500 bags of sand distributed to Hallandale Beach residents on Friday; Miami Beach closes ahead of Isaias

HALLANDALE BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A sandbag distribution has ended in Hallandale Beach after more than 1,500 sandbags were given away to residents.

The event was held in the parking lot of the Big Easy Casino, located at 831 N. Federal Highway, Friday.

The distribution began at 9 a.m. and wrapped up just before 12 p.m. as residents in the city are used to flooding conditions when a hurricane hits their area.

Residents and business owners were able to stock up on sandbags before Hurricane Isaias’ expected arrival over the weekend.

“If you’re in a flood-prone area, try to sandbag your house, stay at home, be prepared for the storm,” said Hallandale Beach Mayor Joy Cooper. “If you’re at work and it’s flooded, do not go in flood areas. You will damage people’s homes and damage your cars. We are out here stressing everybody to be safe during this storm.”

Each car that showed up to the distribution was able to leave with up to 10 sandbags.

“It’s very important for the water not to reduce into our homes and help us be safe,” resident Dorothy Bacon said.

City officials have already taken precautionary measures to put up shutters on parts of City Hall that has computers with important data.

Crews are also working to clear out storm drains before the anticipated storm to avoid major flooding issues.

Doral, another flood-prone area, has also been handing out sandbags for residents to stock up and protect their property.

“One of our doors, like, doesn’t close properly, so a lot of water comes in, so we’re probably gonna use it for that door,” said a Doral resident.

In North Bay Village, another coastal community, sandbags were distributed to residents and businesses. There, only five bags per person were allowed.

North Bay Village Mayor Brent Latham said the city is ready for whatever Isaias throws its way.

“We’re forecasted to get somewhere between two and four inches of rain, and we want to make sure our drains are cleared and that as much water as possible can make its way through the storm system and out into the bay,” he said.

South Florida Water Management is also preparing for Isaias by lowering the canal levels to make room for more rain.

“We’re manning our pump stations and gates to make sure that they operate throughout the storm, and we’ll be ready for you to move that water when it arrives,” said a South Florida Water Management representative.

Meanwhile, Miami Beach closed early not just because of the curfew or COVID concerns, but because of the imminent hurricane.

South Beach had minimal storm prep, but at least one place was ready for nasty weather for a different reason: The iconic Mango’s has been closed and boarded due to the pandemic.

7News was told the storm shutters on the two businesses on each side of Mango’s were assembled to handle what Isaias might bring.

Some businesses elsewhere had sandbags in front of doors and windows, bringing on a rare Friday night on Ocean Drive, which has already undergone a litany of changes due to COVID-19.

If you still need sandbags, check with your city.

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