Tag Archives: state of emergency

Hurricane Idalia landing in Florida, more Georgia counties on Hurricane Watch 2023-08-30

Cedar Key is getting high winds from Hurricane Idalia, and Steinhatchee’s weather camera is offline, while the National Weather Service has added more Georgia counties to its Hurricane Watch; all Florida Suwannee River Basin Counties were already in Hurricane Watch.

If you’re in Florida, hunker down. If you’re in Georgia, you may have time for some last-minute preparations. Either way, most schools and businesses are closed today in the Hurricane Watch counties, so there’s not much need to go out in the rain and wind.

Also, don’t buy water in plastic bottles. Fill pots, jugs, buckets, and bathtubs with tap or well water.

Watch your local county or city Emergency Management Agency. Have your power utility outage number handy.

Dear central and south Florida urban sophisticates: we know you’re used to this. In the rural Suwannee River Basin a Category 3 hurricane is unusual, especially one making landfall where it is, and likely to stay a hurricane so far inland.

Also, many of us remember Hurricane Michael, which only five years ago devastated the Florida Big Bend and trashed Albany, Georgia, on a path only a bit farther west than Hurricane Idalia. So this is not a joke to those of us who live here.

Better safe than sorry.

[Hurricane Watch in more Georgia Counties, High winds at Cedar Key, Hurricane Idalia, 2023-08-30 06:00]
Hurricane Watch in more Georgia Counties, High winds at Cedar Key, Hurricane Idalia, 2023-08-30 06:00

Since our last post, NWS JAX has added to the Hurricane Watch Suwannee River Basin Georgia counties Thomas, Cook, Berrien, Atkinson, and Coffee, along with more counties northeastward, Jeff Davis, Bacon, Pierce, Brantley, Apppling, Appling, Wayne, Tatnall, Long, Evans, and along the coast McIntosh, Liberty, Bryan, and Chatham Counties. All the Florida Suwannee River Basin Counties were already on Hurricane Watch.

All the nearby Georgia and Florida counties are on Tropical Storm Warning, as far west as Albany in Dougherty County. Continue reading

Georgia declares State of Emergency for Hurricane Idalia 2023-08-29

Update 2023-08-30: Hurricane Idalia landing in Florida, more Georgia counties on Hurricane Watch 2023-08-30.

The Georgia governor has declared a State of Emergency about Hurricane Idalia for the entire state.

[Georgia State of Emergency, Hurricane Watch Counties 2023-08-29 14:27]
Georgia State of Emergency, Hurricane Watch Counties 2023-08-29 14:27

Like the earlier Florida State of Emergency, this Georgia one mobilizes numerous state agencies and enables cooperation with relevant federal agencies.

The Executive Order does not name any counties, but the press release names almost all the Suwannee River Basin Counties on the GA-FL line (Brooks, Lowndes, Echols, Clinch, Ware, and Charlton), plus Lanier, but not Thomas. Continue reading

Well testing results, Madison County, FL, after Valdosta sewage spill 2020-01-03

The Madison County, Florida, Board of County Commissioners is meeting again this Wednesday morning before the two other meetings about Valdosta wastewater that same day.

When: 9 AM, January 8, 2020

Where: Courthouse Annex – Commission Meeting Room,
229 SW Pinckney Street, Madison, FL 32340

What: Regular Meeting, Madison County Board of County Commissioners

Speaking: Sign in for Petitions from the Public, 5 minutes each, at the beginning of the meeting.

The Madison BOCC has had three special called meetings about Valdosta wastewater, in which it allocated $5,000 for water well testing, declared a State of Emergency, extended it twice, and received a report of results of testing of private wells. Madison BOCC also also distributed information from Madison County Health Department about testing water wells and when and how to disinfect a water well.

Hamilton County, Florida BOCC and Health Department implemented the same measures. Will Valdosta pay for these extraordinary expenditures of money and resources by downstream counties?

What did Valdosta, Lowndes County, or Brooks County, Georgia, do? It seems that there are fewer people living along the Withlacoochee River in those counties than in these Florida counties, but some concern for those that do would seem appropriate.

In the agenda packet, on page 12, are the one-page MINUTES OF THE SPECIAL MEETING, FRIDAY, JANUARY 3, 2020:

[Well testing results]
Well testing results

New Business #1: Discussion and Possible Approval of Extension of Declaration of State of Emergency in Response to the City of Valdosta Sewage Spill into the Withlachoochee River. Continue reading

Raining now, sending Valdosta sewage downstream; Florida warns; Valdosta does what? 2019-12-22

Update 2019-12-23: E. coli at Little River Confluence, Spook Bridge, and Knights Ferry, Withlacoochee River 2019-12-21

The National Weather Service predicts rain coming down now will raise the Withlacoochee River from Low to Action stages above Valdosta starting today. This is after WWALS already apparently detected Valdosta sewage passing GA 133 on Tuesday, continuing Thursday, so Valdosta’s record-largest sewage spill is likely headed downstream. Florida has put out alerts, allocated funds for testing, and at least one county has declared a state of emergency. When will Valdosta even post signs downstream to the state line? When will Valdosta reimburse the downstream Florida Counties and health departments for their expenses?

[Skipper Bridge Gauge, Withlacoochee, above Valdosta, 2019-12-22, 7:30 AM]
Skipper Bridge Gauge, Withlacoochee, above Valdosta, 2019-12-22, 7:30 AM
water.weather.gov, with predicted water levels.

There’s a lot of concern downstream in Florida. Hamilton County put warning signs at all its boat ramps and Florida Parks put one at Madison Blue Spring. Those signs were still in place when I looked Monday afternoon, December 16, 2019.

[Florida Health Advisory on kiosk]
Florida Health Advisory on kiosk at Florida Campsites, upstream from Madison Blue Spring, 2019-12-16.

But Valdosta has only posted warning signs at a few places within its own city limits and at Troupville Boat Ramp, with no signs at US 84, Knights Ferry Boat Ramp, Nankin Boat Ramp, or State Line Boat Ramp. Continue reading