Q: Is there a curfew?
A: The curfew and prohibition on alcohol sales during curfew hours have been lifted.
Q: Can I burn my debris?
A: The ban on outdoor burning initiated after Hurricane Michael has been lifted for the unincorporated areas of Bay County. Outdoor burning is regulated by the Florida Forest Service (FFS). Current state restrictions on burning include a requirement to obtain permits for piles larger than eight feet in diameter and limit the pile to yard waste. Yard waste is any vegetative debris such as grass clippings, brush, leaves, tree limbs, palm fronds, etc. Residents must meet the required setbacks and the debris must fit in an eight-foot diameter pile or non-combustible container.
Outdoor burning of yard waste is allowed after 8 a.m. All fires must be extinguished one hour before sunset. It is illegal to burn household garbage including paper products, treated lumber, plastics, rubber materials, tires, pesticide, paint and aerosol containers.
Outdoor Burning Tips:
Clear an area down to bare soil around the pile to prevent the fire from spreading
Cover a non-combustible container with wire mesh to keep sparks from flying out and starting new fires
Please don’t burn within:
25 feet of forests
50 feet of paved public roads
25 feet of your house
150 feet of other occupied buildings
To obtain a burn authorization or for questions regarding outdoor burning, contact the Florida Forest Service Chipola Forestry Center at 850-373-1801.
Q: Is FEMA assistance available?
A: Although the federal government cannot make you whole, it may be able to help your recovery move forward by providing grants for basic repairs to make your home safe, accessible and secure. FEMA assistance also may provide temporary help with a place for you and your family to stay while you build your own recovery plan. To apply visit DisasterAssistance.gov, or call 800-621-3362 (800-462-7585 TTY). You will need your social security number, daytime telephone number, current mailing address and address and zip code of the damaged property, and insurance information, if available. For more information about common questions and rumors, visit www.fema.gov/hurricane-michael-rumor-control.
Q: Is the water safe to drink?
A: Parts of Bay County remain under a mandatory boil water notice, however “Mandatory Boil Water Orders” have been lifted in all areas except Mexico Beach and Tyndall Air Force Base.
For residents still under the boil water order:
- If you have utility power or generator power, bring the water to a rolling boil for at least three minutes
- If you do not have power, use bottled water or eight drops of regular, unscented household bleach per gallon of water to prepare it for cooking use.
- For drinking, cooking, washing wounds, and brushing teeth, use bottled water or boiled water. Water should be held to a rolling boil for one minute.
Q: When will schools reopen?
A: Damage assessment of the public school system buildings continues. Bay District Schools are moving forward with plans to reopen schools no later than the week of Nov. 12 (and earlier if at all possible).