STORM UPDATE 07/02/2012 7:30 PM

The Columbia County Emergency Management is asking the public’s assistance in identifying those that may need to be evacuated still from flood water and those roads that may still be under water that the county is not aware of yet, please call the Citizens Information Center 386-719-7530, the Center (CIC) remains open around the clock.

Richardson Middle School is also still open as a shelter, it is located one block south of Baya Avenue on Pennsylvania Street.

Mosquito spraying continues tonight and throughout the week from 6:00pm – 11:00pm.

Flood warnings remain in effect for the Suwannee River at White Springs. The Suwannee at White Springs crested Wednesday with an unofficial stage of 85.23, the third highest flood at White Springs exceeded only by 1973 (88.56) and 1984 (85.36). Record-keeping at this gage started in 1906. The 32′ rise in two days appears to be the fastest by far in the record, beating a 20′ rise in 2 days in 1996. Early morning on the 26th the river was rising 2.4 feet per hour. White Springs should fall below flood stage late next week.

Flood warnings are in effect for the Santa Fe at Fort White, Three Rivers, and Hildreth.
The Santa Fe above O’Leno State Park near I-75 and at the US 441 Bridge near High Springs have crested. The Santa Fe near Fort White at the 47 Bridge crested at an unofficial stage of 32.24. Three Rivers is above flood stage. It is appears to have crested at 23.29. No-wake restrictions are in effect for the Santa Fe between O’Leno River Rise and the Suwannee confluence.

Preliminary Damage Assessment (PDA) teams composed of SERT and FEMA representatives began surveying areas impacted by Tropical Storm Debby on Friday, June 29. PDA team members may ask about your damages and insurance but DO NOT REQUIRE any personally identifiable information, such as a social security number. PDA teams must be requested by the county emergency management agency. All state PDA team members wear a State Emergency Response Team shirt and carry state identification. On Sunday, July 1, Governor Scott made a request to President Barack Obama that the State of Florida receive a Major Disaster Declaration to assist Florida counties that were impacted by Tropical Storm Debby.

State officials say the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will review Gov. Scott’s request and advise President Obama on whether to issue a declaration. If a declaration is made, individual assistance could be granted to qualifying counties.
According to Koon, about 20 teams from the state and FEMA commenced joint preliminary damage assessments for individual and public assistance in Baker, Bradford, Columbia, Pasco and Wakulla counties on June 29. Gov. Scott’s initial request is based on the preliminary damage assessment findings for individual assistance for those five counties.
Koon added the scope of this request will be amended in the coming days to add requests for public assistance in the above listed counties, as well as individual and public assistance for additional counties based on the results of the preliminary damage assessments that are currently being conducted.