WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (October 11, 2018)– Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle Wednesday afternoon. Walton County Emergency Management Operations Center has led response efforts since activation on Monday, October 8. The Walton Area Chamber of Commerce has staffed Emergency Support Function (ESF 18): Business & Industry post during the Emergency Operations Center activation. As neighbors and friends, we are prepared to offer support to those who need it. Our thoughts and prayers are with our sister counties to the east of Walton County.
The following information is the most recent available regarding road closures, governmental office and school, power outages, volunteering, donations and drop off sites.
The Clyde B. Wells (Hwy 331) Bridge is open and there are no curfews for Walton County.
Florida Highway Patrol has closed sections of I-10 for debris clean up. Eastbound lanes are closed from mile marker 85 in DeFuniak Springs to mile marker 160 past Sneads, Fla. Westbound lanes are closed from mile marker 123 just east of Chipley to mile marker 160 just east of Sneads.
To see a full list of Walton County road closures, visit https://www.facebook.com/WaltonCountyEM/posts/2093006974096221.
All government and county offices will be closed on Friday, October 12th. Walton County Schools will be closed Friday, October 12thand re-open Tuesday, October 16.
Power companies like Choctawhatchee Electric Cooperative, Inc. and Gulf Power Company are working diligently to restore power. However, Walton and surrounding counties are still experiencing power outages. At this time, Gulf Power has 2,146 power outages in Walton County. CHELCO has 14,000 power outages.
If you see power lines down or road blockages in Walton County please report it to Walton County Sheriff’s Office at (850) 892-8111. For motorists on the roadways, treat every intersection with a non-working traffic light as a four-way stop.
You can also call Volunteer Florida at 1-800-FLHELP1 (354-3571).
Please know that teams are still working to assess damage in the areas affected the greatest by Hurricane Michael. We ask that you be patient in waiting for responses for how you may be able to help.
DONATIONS AND DROP OFF SITES
We would like to urge our citizens to keep their hurricane supplies. Below is a list of items needed:
- Cash is the best donation at this time
- Florida Disaster Fund: The Florida Disaster Fund is the State of Florida’s official private fund established to assist Florida’s communities as they respond to and recover during times of emergency or disaster. In partnership with the public sector, private sector and other non-governmental organizations, the Florida Disaster Fund supports response and recovery activities.
- To make a onetime donation of $10, text the word DISASTER to 20222 and a one-time donation of $10.00 will be added to your mobile phone bill or deducted from your prepaid balance.
- To make a onetime donation of $25, text the word DISASTER25 to 20222 and a one-time donation of $25.00 will be added to your mobile phone bill or deducted from your prepaid balance.
- Cleaning Supplies
- Paper Goods
- Hygiene items and Toiletries (diapers, wipes, pads, tampons, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, etc.)
Walton County has three official drop off sites that are partnering together to collect donations.
If you would like to donate hurricane relief items, please drop them off during normal business hours at one of the following locations:
- DeFuniak Springs: Southern Choice Properties (917 US HWY 331 S), M-F 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
- DeFuniak Springs: Matrix COC (37 State Highway 83), M-F 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Sat 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
- Santa Rosa Beach: Walton Area Chamber Office (63 S. Centre Trail Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459), M-F 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
The Salvation Army will be assisting with the collection and transportation efforts at these official drop off locations.
If your business has resources available that you would like to share, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will distribute the information appropriately.