Governor Rick Scott said Floridians should not take the threat of Hurricane Matthew lightly.
"This storm is catastrophic, and if it hits our state, we could see impacts that we have not seen in many years," Scott said in a statement on Sunday.
A small westward shift in Matthew's long term track would significantly increase risk to Florida.
"Even though the storm’s projected path is just east of our state, no one should take this lightly. Storms change fast and Hurricane Matthew could hit Florida as early as Wednesday," he said.
Scott is being briefed on the storm's developments and the state is holding calls twice a day about resources to prepare for and respond to Matthew if needed.
He said no evacuations have been issued for Florida, but that could change quickly.
Scott is asking people to have a plan and prepare this weekend for any impacts the storm may bring.
He said families should have three days of food and water, flashlights, batteries and a battery-powered radio just in case.
The Category 4 hurricane is currently over the Caribbean and is expected to bring life-threatening rainfall to portions of Haiti.
It has already caused at least one death when a 16-year-old boy was crushed by a boulder as he tried to clear a blocked drain.
“It’s a very dangerous storm and life threatening," Scott said in a statement. "We haven’t seen a storm of this magnitude approach our state in a very long time."
He said even if the storm does not directly hit Florida, people should prepare for strong winds, rip currents and beach erosion along the east coast.
He is urging families to have a response plan or prepare one now on FLGetAPlan.com.
Scott's full statement:
Cox Media Group