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Sandbag locations are open around Leon County as severe weather moves through the Big Bend

SEVERE WEATHER
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The Big Bend is under a severe weather threat, and a flood watch is in effect until late Saturday morning.

Severe weather is likely through Saturday across the Big Bend. So, sandbags are being made available by Tallahassee and Leon County governments.

News release from the City of Tallahassee:

The City of Tallahassee is closely monitoring the changing weather conditions. According to the National Weather Service, significant severe weather impacts, such as high winds and localized flooding, are anticipated across the Big Bend region starting Friday, March 11, and continuing overnight into Saturday, March 12. Residents are encouraged to prepare.

To assist citizens in flood-prone areas, the City will open two sandbag locations at 8 a.m. on Friday, March 11. Sandbag sites will be available at James Messer Park South (2830 Jackson Bluff Road) and the former Northwood Centre site off Tharpe Street. Sandbags are limited to 25 bags per household. Citizens need to bring shovels to fill bags themselves. Locations will not be staffed, but crews will monitor and provide additional sand and bags as needed. The site will be open until the storm threat has passed and it is determined there is no longer a need.

With high winds in the forecast, residents are encouraged to bring loose items and outdoor furniture inside. City crews and additional staff will be on call Friday and Saturday to address power outages, downed trees, debris or other service issues.

Citizens should download the free DigiTally app now. Through the app, residents can easily report issues such as downed trees and power outages. Outages can also be reported via Talgov.com/Outage. A map showing general areas with reported outages is available on both the website and app. City utility customers can also call 850-891-4968 to report power outages; call wait times will be longer during major events.

To stay informed about City services as this weather system develops, follow @CityofTLH on Twitter and Facebook and check Talgov.com.

News release from Leon County government:

Following recent heavy rainfall with more expected on Friday, Leon County will open four sandbag locations for residents.

Beginning Thursday, March 10 at 2 p.m., sandbags are available to the public at the following Leon County locations:

  • Leon County's Northeast Branch Library, 5513 Thomasville Road
  • Apalachee Regional Park (Solid Waste Management Facility), 7550 Apalachee Parkway
  • Fred George Park, 3043 Capital Circle NW
  • At the intersection of Oak Ridge Road at Ranchero Road

Leon County will staff these sites and sandbag fillers will be available to assist residents in quickly filling sandbags. Sand, bags and ties will be available for public use at no cost to residents. The County asks residents to take no more than 15 bags so as to allow others to prepare.
Property owners who have experienced flooding problems in the past can use sandbags to help divert stormwater from their property.

Leon County advises residents to monitor the latest forecasts and be prepared to take the necessary precautions to protect life and property. The National Weather Service also warns that residents should not drive cars through flooded areas and that if they see flood waters to turn around and find another route.

Residents are also encouraged not to attempt to walk through floodwaters. Any and all flood water should be considered to be contaminated. Do not allow children to play in, wade through or swim in flood water.

Updates on official road closures can be found by downloading the Leon County Citizens Connect App in the Apple or Google Play store and the Leon County Emergency Information Portal (EIP) at www.LeonCountyFL.gov/ei/.

Residents requiring more information or assistance should call Leon County Emergency Management at (850) 606-3700.

Gina Jordan is the host of Morning Edition for WFSU News. Gina is a Tallahassee native and graduate of Florida State University. She spent 15 years working in news/talk and country radio in Orlando before becoming a reporter and All Things Considered host for WFSU in 2008. Follow Gina: @hearyourthought on Twitter. Click below for Gina's full bio.