State and local emergency management officials are urging residents and visitors to stay alert and exercise caution as another Gulf storm system nears the state, bringing additional rain and flooding to soaked areas and rivers of the Panhandle and Big Bend regions today and Friday.
“We want residents to stay on guard going into the weekend for changing conditions and be prepared to put their disaster plans into action if faced with rising waters,” said Meteorologist Amy Godsey.
A Flash Flood Watch is in effect for Escambia, Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties through Friday morning. An additional 2 to 3 inches of rainfall is forecast to occur over the next 48 hours which would likely cause additional flooding concerns due to saturated soil conditions.
River Flood Warnings also remain in effect across the Florida Panhandle and Big Bend. With current forecasts, the Choctawhatchee River near Bruce may experience the most significant amount of flooding and may rise into major flood stage early Saturday and continue to rise throughout the weekend. Impacts will be similar to what occurred earlier this year during the March and April floods.
Area rivers that are at risk of flooding are: Apalachicola River, Aucilla River, Choctawhatchee River, Escambia River, Perdido River and the Yellow River.
“Holiday travelers should plan ahead and check their destination status if near area rivers this weekend,” added Godsey. “Please remember to ‘Turn Around, Don’t Drown’ and remain safe by observing any road closures.”
The State Watch Office in Tallahassee continues to monitor conditions with Meteorology and Operations staff and to assist with any requests from county emergency management partners.