Tropical Storm Claudette is moving through the region with the outer bands in our area bringing possible tornadoes, flash flooding and life-threatening surf/rip currents. Escambia County is under a Tropical Storm Warning with tropical storm conditions expected throughout Saturday. The county is also currently under a Flash Flood Warning until 4:30 p.m. and a Tornado Watch has been issued for portions of Escambia County until 7 p.m. Tropical Storm Claudette made landfall in southeast Louisiana just before 7 a.m. CT, according to the National Hurricane Center. The Pensacola area can expect heavy rainfall — as much as 12 inches — which began on Friday and will continue throughout the weekend.
This morning there were two homes with fallen trees on them in the Ferry Pass area. There were no injuries. An 18-wheeler overturned on I-10 that was possibly high wind or tornado-related, and there were no injuries associated with that incident.
At approximately 11 a.m., Escambia County asked the Sheriff's Office to close Copter Road/Ely Road in Ferry Pass and W. Fairfield Drive/Market St. in Brent until high water subsides.
At approximately 11 a.m., the Florida Highway Patrol closed I-10 Escambia Bay Bridge, east and westbound lanes, due to high winds for about an hour. Traffic was rerouted: westbound is Avalon Blvd. to Hwy. 90 to Scenic. Eastbound is Scenic Hwy. to Hwy. 90 to Avalon Blvd.
Several roadways in the City of Pensacola have closed temporarily due to flooding. To view a real-time road closures map, click here: https://bit.ly/3vDzRtD. Roadways will reopen as the water recedes and they become passable.
For safety purposes, the Santa Rosa Island Authority (SRIA) has canceled the Pensacola Beach Island Trolley services on Friday, June 18, and Saturday, June 19.
"Escambia County Emergency Management would like residents to stay home if possible until this storm subsides," said Interim Public Safety Director Eric Gilmore. "High winds and flooding have caused issues on some roadways. Please continue to stay aware of the latest updates to stay safe."
If flooding occurs in a home, residents should take pictures of flood water lines on their residences for documentation as soon as it’s safe to do so. Please use the county's new self reporting tool to report flood or wind damage to your residence or business for documentation purposes only.
Flooding Safety Tips
- With possible flooding forecast for our area, please do not drive into hazardous flood water and remember to Turn Around Don't Drown®. Follow these flood safety tips:
- Get to higher ground – Get out of areas subject to flooding.
- Do not drive into water – Do not drive or walk into flooded areas. It only takes 6" of water to knock you off your feet and 2 feet of water to carry away a vehicle.
- Stay informed – Monitor local radar, television, weather radio, internet or social media for updates.
Pensacola International Airport
Pensacola International Airport is starting to see some cancellations, new times, and several delays. Please check flight status on the airport's website and with your airline. If you are flying out today, be safe traveling to the airport and arrive at least two hours early.
- Escambia River Electric Cooperative, Inc. - follow (4) Escambia River Electric Cooperative, Inc. | Facebook for the latest updates.
11 am – EREC line crews are making great progress on power outages due to Tropical Storm Claudette. Approximately 5,000 outages from earlier this morning have been reduced to about 650. Two main circuits in the Wallace and Chumuckla areas have been restored bringing several thousand members back online. Crews will continue to work until every member's power has been restored.
- Gulf Power Company
Gulf Power crews have been working throughout the night, restoring power safely and as quickly as they can. At 11 a.m. today, Gulf Power has approximately 3,700 customers without power across Northwest Florida. Keep track on our outage map: http://spr.ly/6180yOCdn
- Do not go near downed power lines and call 911.
- Learn more about general safety and usage guidelines for generators at bit.ly/3ozTLTX.
Water Safety Tips
Stay informed. Things can change quickly. Be sure you take time every day to monitor the local media. Escambia County also has several tools available for our residents. Learn more here. Monitor local media and legitimate online and social media sources like Escambia County Emergency Management, US National Weather Service Mobile, and NOAA NWS National Hurricane Center.
More information on what to do before, during and after a storm is available online at BeReadyEscambia.com. You can also follow @BeReadyEscambia on Twitter and like Escambia County Emergency Management on Facebook for the latest news and updates on emergencies impacting our community.