Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Florida Division of Emergency Management officials are urging residents and visitors in South and East Central Florida to be extremely cautious when using area roadways and when near local canals, rivers, and other water bodies as rain bands from Tropical Storm Nicole affect the area both today and tomorrow. The State Emergency Operations Center will return to a Level 3 activation effective 1 p.m. today, but will continue to monitor and support counties that may be impacted.

“Though the system has now been named Tropical Storm Nicole, the official forecast track keeps the center of the storm east of Florida, with no anticipated landfall,” said David Halstead, Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management. “South and East Central Florida residents should prepare for heavy rainfall and possible flooding from this system.”

There is also the potential for isolated tornadoes and gusty winds. All residents and visitors should remember to “Turn Around, Don’t Drown” when approaching a flooded roadway, as only six inches of moving water can cause drivers to lose control of a vehicle.

All Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings for the state of Florida have been discontinued. However, a Flood Watch remains in effect for Broward, Miami-Dade, and Palm Beach counties through 8 p.m. tonight. There is also a Flood Watch in effect for Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin, Okeechobee, Brevard, Osceola, Orange, and Seminole counties through 5 p.m. today.

To avoid getting caught in a flood, follow these safety tips:

- A NOAA All-Hazards Weather Radio is one of the best ways to receive warnings from the National Weather Service. Monitor the NOAA Weather Radio or your favorite news source for vital weather-related information.
- If flooding occurs, get to higher ground. Do not enter areas subject to flooding, including: dips, low spots, canals, ditches, etc.
- Avoid already flooded areas, especially if the water is flowing fast. Do not attempt to cross flowing streams.
- Road beds may be washed out under flood waters. NEVER drive through flooded roadways.
- Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams and washes, particularly during threatening conditions.
- Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood dangers.

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