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FSU Panama City Campus Closed Indefinitely Due To Hurricane Michael Damage

Damaged buildings like this one dot the coastline and west of Tallahassee.
Courtesy of Florida State University

Florida State University’s Panama City Campus is closed indefinitely. The school sustained heavy water and infrastructure damage due to Hurricane Michael. The university announced the closure Friday after school officials took a helicopter over Thursday to get their first look at the site following the storm.

“The structural damage to several facilities is significant. Multiple trees down. So There’s a lot of work to be done to get that campus rebooted and ready for operation,” said FSU Police Chief David Perry.

Perry was part of the FSU group that flew over to the area. On the way, he noted damage to the coast got worse the closer they got to Panama City. He says buildings look as if they’ve exploded. Perry says he saw a train carrying cars toppled on its side.


Hurricane Michael made landfall Wednesday in Mexico Beach. It has knocked out communication and power in Bay County, damaged utility systems across the panhandle and both local and state officials say it could take weeks to get those systems back up. And months for the region to recover. Early estimates are putting Michael’s damages at up to $4.5 billion. City and county crews have started damage assessments and insurance companies are making their way out as well.

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Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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