Tuesday, December 15, 2009

RESIDENTS REMINDED TO AVOID FLOODED AREAS, RIVERS IN THE PANHANDLE TODAY

State and local emergency management officials are reminding residents and visitors to exercise caution as a series of weather systems are combining to cause widespread scattered showers and thunderstorms across the western Panhandle and Florida Big Bend regions today.

“Residents and visitors in the area need to be aware of changing conditions and remember to ‘Turn Around, Don’t Drown’ if faced with a flooded roadway,” said Meteorologist Amy Godsey.

A Flash Flood Watch is in effect through this afternoon for Escambia, Santa Rosa, and Okaloosa counties due to forecasted rains up to 3 inches in addition to 4-8 inches previously received earlier this week.

Across northwestern Florida, a River Flood Warning is in effect for the Apalachicola River at Blountstown, Aucilla River at Lamont, Blackwater River near Baker, Choctawhatchee River near Caryville and Bruce, Escambia River near Century, Perdido River near Barrineau Park, Shoal River near Crestview, and St. Marks River near Newport due to the heavy rainfall over the past 24 hours.

“Make sure to plan ahead and check your destination if travelling near area rivers,” added Godsey. “Stay safe by respecting the power of water and heeding any local road closures due to flooding.”

The State Watch Office in Tallahassee continues to monitor conditions with Meteorology and Operations staff and assist with any requests from county partners.

For more information on the Florida Division of Emergency Management and to GET A PLAN!, please visit: http://www.floridadisaster.org/. All students, teachers and parents can find educational information and free downloadable materials at: http://www.kidsgetaplan.com/. And for the latest situation and flash reports go to: www.YouTube.com/FloridaSERT .
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