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The original item was published from 9/16/2020 12:04:35 PM to 9/18/2020 7:49:23 AM.

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Posted on: September 16, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Hurricane Sally update #9

Sept. 16, 9 a.m. - Updates are highlighted

  • "We are starting to see to see the impacts of the heavier eyewall cells that are coming through. We are seeing higher winds and heavier rainfall than we’ve seen in the last few hours. We are starting to see roadways flooding, more trees down and power lines down, so we’re asking everybody to please stay home. If you are home, we are seeing increased water levels in the bays, so if you are trapped in your house and the water is rising please call 911. Other than that we ask you to please stay home. Emergency vehicles are only responding to high water calls, due to the high wind and the excessive rain we are getting," Brad Baker, public safety director. 
  • The county will still see several hours of high wind and heavy rains.
  • Do not travel to the beach. Conditions are very hazardous. Access to the beach is closed.
  • As winds die down, fire and EMS will be able to respond to calls based on priority.
  • Public works crews will begin to clear roads once the storm has passed.
  • A Flash Flood Emergency has been declared for Gulf Breeze, Holley-Navarre, Midway, Navarre Beach. Up to 20" of rain have already fallen in those areas.A Flash Flood EMERGENCY is issued in EXCEEDINGLY RARE situations when extremely heavy rain is leading to a severe threat to human life and CATASTROPHIC DAMAGE from a flash flood is happening or will happen soon.
  • A Tornado Watch is in effect for all of Santa Rosa County until 6 p.m.
  • A Flash Flood Warning is in effect until 12:45 p.m. Turn around, don’t drown!
  • Stay out of the water. No lifeguards are on duty due to dangerous surf conditions. Navarre Beach live web cam -
  • Residents on Blackwater River, Coldwater Creek and Pond Creek need to make preparations and plans (that include pets) to move to higher ground quickly if needed - you can always replace your "stuff."

725 AM CDT Wed Sep 16 2020 update from National Weather Service
- LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Equivalent Cat 1 Hurricane force wind
- Peak Wind Forecast: 65-85 mph with gusts to 105 mph
- Window for Tropical Storm force winds until early Thursday morning
- Window for Hurricane force winds until this afternoon
- The wind threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment.
- PLAN: Plan for life-threatening wind of equivalent CAT 1 or 2 hurricane force.
- PREPARE: Last minute efforts should solely focus on protecting life. The area remains subject to considerable wind damage.
- ACT: Now is the time to shelter from life-threatening wind.
- LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Life-threatening storm surge possible
- Peak Storm Surge Inundation: The potential for 4-7 feet above ground somewhere within surge prone areas
- Window of concern: through Thursday morning
- THREAT TO LIFE AND PROPERTY THAT INCLUDES TYPICAL FORECAST UNCERTAINTY IN TRACK, SIZE AND INTENSITY: Potential for storm surge flooding greater than 6 feet above ground
- The storm surge threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment.
- PLAN: Shelter against life-threatening storm surge flooding of greater than 6 feet above ground.
- PREPARE: All ordered evacuations should be complete.
Evacuees should be in shelters well away from storm surge flooding.
- ACT: Remain sheltered in a safe location. Do not venture outside. Move to upper floors to escape rising water if necessary.
- Potential impacts from the main surge event are unfolding.
- LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Flash Flood Watch is in effect
- Peak Rainfall Amounts: Additional 4-8 inches, with locally higher amounts
- The flooding rain threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment.
- PLAN: Emergency plans should include the potential for extreme flooding from heavy rain. Evacuations and rescues are likely.
- PREPARE: Urgently consider protective actions from extreme and widespread rainfall flooding.
- ACT: Heed any flood watches and warnings. Failure to take action will likely result in serious injury or loss of life.
- POTENTIAL IMPACTS: Devastating to Catastrophic
- Extreme rainfall flooding may prompt numerous evacuations and rescues.
- Rivers and tributaries may overwhelmingly overflow their banks in many places with deep moving water. Small streams, creeks, canals, and ditches may become raging rivers. - Flood control systems and barriers may become stressed.
- Numerous places where flood waters may cover escape routes.
- Driving conditions become very dangerous.
- LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Tornado Watch is in effect
- Situation is somewhat favorable for tornadoes
- The tornado threat has remained nearly steady from the previous assessment.
- PLAN: Emergency plans should continue to include possible tornadoes.
- PREPARE: Stay within your shelter keeping informed of the latest tornado situation.
- ACT: Move quickly to the safest place within your shelter if a tornado warning is issued.
- The occurrence of isolated tornadoes can hinder the execution of emergency plans during tropical events.
- A few places may experience tornado damage, along with power and communications disruptions.
- Locations could realize roofs peeled off buildings, chimneys toppled, mobile homes pushed off foundations or overturned, large tree tops and branches snapped off, shallow-rooted trees knocked over, moving vehicles blown off roads, and small boats pulled from moorings.


  • Milton Community Center, 5629 Byrom St. in Milton (map), is open as a shelter. No pre-registration is required. Zone A and mobile home residents are encouraged to evacuate.
  • Milton Community Center is also a pet-friendly shelter. Bring pet(s) in a carrier with proof of vaccinations and all pet food and supplies including water, leashes and/or litter boxes with litter.
  • Bring COVID supplies for you and your family or they will be provided for you. Masks are required in shelters.
  • Shelters are usually uncomfortable. Meals are not provided. It is recommended that other arrangements be made to stay at a hotel or with a friends or family in a well-constructed home out that is properly protected to withstand hurricane force winds.
  • Anyone needing transportation assistance to a shelter should call (850) 983-4636. Transportation will only be provided if winds are below tropical storm force (so call early) and will only take you to a designated shelter.
  • Bring the following items:
    • Personal identification
    • Water, non-perishable snacks and any special dietary needs.
    • A change of clothing, rain gear and sturdy shoes.
    • Toiletries and personal items.
    • Blankets, pillows and sleeping bags.
    • Games or toys for children; books for adults.
    • Special items for infants or elderly family members.
    • Battery operated radio, flashlights and plenty of spare batteries.
    • Prescriptions or any over-the-counter medications you normally need.

Road Closures


  • I-10 over Escambia Bay, Three Mile Bridge, Garcon Point Bridge and the Navarre Causeway are closed. Bridges close when sustained tropical storm force winds are observed by FDOT or law enforcement officials. If one bridge closes, it does not mean all will close.
  • Bridges will reopen as winds subside.
  • Bridges that typically flood include:
         Deaton Bridge/Deaton Bridge Road
         Wagner Bridge/East Fork Coldwater Creek/Spring Hill Road
         Red Rock Bridge/Juniper Creek/Red Rock Road
         Juniper Creek Bridge/Indian Ford Road
         West Fork Big Coldwater Creek Bridge/Walling Road
         Turkey Creek Bridge/Amos Cabaniss Road
  • For state and federal road closures (I-10, 87, 89, 90, 98, Avalon Blvd.), see


  • If you do not have to be on the road, stay off the road, especially at night. Motorists are strongly discouraged from driving along the beach given the wind, rain and road closure. Turn around, don’t drown.
  • EMS and fire cannot respond to calls after sustained tropical storm force winds are present. 
  • Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock.
  • Avoid wading in floodwater, which can be contaminated and contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water. 
  • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery ONLY outdoors and away from windows. Always have a battery-powered carbon monoxide detector when using a generator.


After the storm has passed and you are cleaning up, please take care to separate your debris to help with removal.

- normal household trash

- vegetative debris

- construction/demolition debris

- appliances/white goods

- electronics

- household hazardous debris

County Offices

  • Emergency Management is activated at a Level II for Hurricane Sally.
  • All county offices including the libraries, supervisor of elections, clerk of court, tax collector and property appraiser are closed today and will remain closed Wed., Sept. 16.
  • The FY21 Budget Meeting will be rescheduled.

County COVID Testing

  • COVID testing at Milton Community Center will be closed Wed., Sept. 16.

General Preparedness Information

  • Stay informed! Sign up for emergency alerts at
  • Sandbags are available at area Lowe’s, Ace Hardware and Hall’s Hardware. Bring your own sandbags and shovel. Sand for sandbags is on a first-come, first-serve basis at the following locations:
    - The corner of Leisure St. and Citrus Dr. in Navarre
    - Tiger Point Park in Gulf Breeze
    - Pace Fire-Rescue in Pace
    - The corner of Pine Forest Rd. and Carroll Rd. in Milton
    - Crews will continue to monitor and replenish sand as weather permits.
  • For current weather events, visit
  • For information on preparing for disasters, visit

Central Landfill/Waste Haulers

  • Central Landfill will remain closed Wed., Sept. 16.
  • Waste haulers ECUA and Waste Pro will not pick up on Wed., Sept. 16.
  • Contact your waste hauler for schedule adjustments.

Navarre Beach Pier

  • Navarre pier is closed and will reopen once conditions allow.

Ascension Medical Group

  • All Ascension Medical Group offices have closed and will remain closed Wed., Sept. 16 including the Urgent Care Center in Pace.

Santa Rosa County School District

  • Per the Santa Rosa County School District, all Santa Rosa County public schools will remain closed Wed., Sept. 16. 

City of Milton

  • City Hall will remain closed Wed., Sept. 16. 
  • Sanitation services will remain suspended Wed., Sept. 16.
  • The City Council Committee of the Whole meeting scheduled for Thurs., Sept. 17 at 5:30 p.m. is still scheduled to take place. 
  • The Milton Community Center is closed for regularly scheduled activities.
  • Natural gas service will be shut off in advance of flood waters reaching regulators. 
  • The City has placed cover weights over manholes in areas subject to flooding.  These 250 lb. weights prevent the manhole coverings from lifting off due to rising waters. These weights can substantially damage a vehicle and should be avoided.  
  • For more information, visit the city’s Facebook page @MiltonFlorida or
  • All city parks are closed.
  • Flooding is expected along the riverbank, so motorists are urged to use caution along Munson Hwy., Broad and Willing streets.

City of Gulf Breeze

  • The city has activated its Emergency Operations Center at City Hall. Residents with storm-related questions should call 850-934-5100. 
  • Shoreline Park South is closed to walkers, motorists and boaters. This includes boat ramps, parks facilities and parking areas.
  • Garbage service is suspended until further notice. A catch up schedule will be posted midweek. The transfer station is also closed.
  • Residents who experience rising water in yards should call the Gulf Breeze EOC at 850-934-5100. Should rising water become life threatening, call 911.
  • Gulf Breeze is coordinating with its Interfaith Disaster Resources Council, comprised of area churches, hospitals and schools, to prepare for post-flooding response. 
  • Sand continues to be available at Shoreline Park. Portable pumps have been pre-staged and additional pumps are available. 

Town of Jay

  • The Town of Jay is open as usual.

Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

  • Santa Rosa County FWCC offices will be closed on Wed., Sept. 16.


  • FDLE’s Pensacola Regional Operations Center is operating a virtual Regional Law Enforcement Coordination team to respond to any needs following landfall. 

Lakeview Center/Avalon Center

  • Lakeview Center outpatient buildings will be closed through Wed., Sept. 16. Staff are working remotely and available for questions or information.
  • Online telehealth sessions will be held as scheduled, call 850-469-3500.

Department of Health

  • Both locations of the county health department will remain closed through Wed., Sept. 16.
  • Staff are able to work from home on COVID. 

First Judicial Circuit Court

  • State courts in Santa Rosa County will remain closed Wed., Sept. 16.
  • Domestic violence injunction hearings will be rescheduled for Fri., Sept. 18 at 8:30 a.m.
  • Judge Hilliard will conduct first appearances by video from the courthouse at 9 a.m. on Wednesday.
  • Judge Giraud’s criminal hearings will be rescheduled.
  • County arraignments will be rescheduled to 8 a.m., Sept. 29.
  • Delinquency hearings have been rescheduled to 9 a.m., Sept. 18.

Power Companies

  • Gulf Power Outage Map
  • Escambia River Electric Cooperative’s electric meters are designed to automatically detect and report power outages, but members are asked to report all outages in case the meter signal is obstructed. Here are three options for outage reporting:
    • Call the outage number: 1-877-OUT-EREC or 1-877-688-3732.
    • Login to your account via and click the Outage Tab.
    • Download EREC’s mobile app through Apple and Android app stores. Login to your account, press the right arrow, choose Report an Outage.

Pensacola State College

  • All Pensacola State College locations, offices, classes and activities are canceled and the college will remain closed through Wed., Sept. 16.
  • PSC plans to reopen Thursday, but will monitor the weather and any storm related issues and send additional alerts if plans change.

Council on Aging

  • Pre-packaged to-go meals distributed from churches and community centers have been ceased and should resume Thurs., Sept. 17.
  • Meals on Wheels is suspended Tues., Sept. 15 and Wed., Sept. 16. Individuals scheduled to receive meals on Tues. or Wed. will receive their meals on Thurs.
  • The Retreat adult day care is closed through Wed., Sept. 16.
  • For questions on Council on Aging programs and services, call (850) 432-1475.

Gulf Islands National Seashore

  • Opal Beach is closed until further notice.
  • Highway 399, J. Earle Bowden Way is closed until further notice.
  • Park staff will assess conditions once the weather passes and throughout the next few days and announce updates as appropriate.   

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