Storm surge is usually what kills people. When Ike hit here in 2008, the storm made landfall basically at the mouth of Galveston Bay, so the worst of the surge was 15-20 miles east up the coast. The best case for Tampa is a landfall to the south, second best a direct hit.Yeah, thankfully, while STP is pretty flat, there is some slight elevation overall. My friend has a shop directly downtown and he's 51' above sea level.
Like most long-time Floridians, he's gonna hunker down and wait this out.