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Posted on: August 28, 2019

Tropical Storm Dorian May Cause Additional Flooding in North Florida

Paved road partly under water on SR 51 entering into Steinhatchee.

LIVE OAK, FLA., Aug. 28, 2019 – Heavy rainfall is expected for north Florida as Tropical Storm Dorian approaches the area. The Suwannee River Water Management District (District) encourages residents and business owners to prepare for potential flooding over Labor Day weekend as a result of the storm. 

Many counties within the District have received high rainfall over the past several months. Most of Dixie, Taylor and Levy counties have received over 20 inches of rain since August 1 and some areas around Steinhatchee received over 30 inches of rain. With rainfall from Tropical Storm Dorian, these counties could be at risk for additional flooding. Coastal areas are also impacted by the very high tides that normally occur at this time of year.

“The high rainfall has resulted in high groundwater levels in some parts of the District, which can cause a higher risk of flooding,” said Fay Baird, Senior Hydrologist for the District. “Regardless of the storm’s path, heavy rain over the weekend would fall on ground that is already saturated and may cause flooding of roads and homes.”

The District recommends planning early to be prepared for possible flooding and standing water. Residents and businesses located by bodies of water and in low-lying areas should:

  • actively monitor conditions using the District’s Water Data Portal,
  • identify alternate routes to their homes/businesses in the event the main route is inaccessible,
  • prepare to move valuables and animals in low-lying areas to higher elevations,
  • subscribe to the District’s Aquifer Alert notification and alert system at www.mysuwanneeriver.com/notifyme, and
  • always evacuate if instructed to do so. 

The District is closely monitoring the storm and possible impacts for the area. Residents, visitors and business owners can find real-time rainfall, river and groundwater levels on the Water Data Portal on the District’s website. The data is updated every two hours. The District also offers a 24-hour voice recording of current river levels by calling (386) 362-6626 or (800) 604-2272 (FL only).

The mission of the Suwannee River Water Management District is to protect and manage water resources using science-based solutions to support natural systems and the needs of the public. The District holds true to the belief of water for nature, water for people. Headquartered in Live Oak, Florida, the District serves 15 surrounding north-central Florida counties.

For more information about the District, visit www.MySuwanneeRiver.com or follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, search @SRWMD.

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