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Florida Panhandle Declared Disaster Area

April 23rd, 2009 Category: Floods

Western Florida Panhandle and surroundings - March 30th, 2009

Western Florida Panhandle and surroundings - March 30th, 2009

Storm over Florida Panhandle - March 28th, 2009

Storm over Florida Panhandle - March 28th, 2009

Yesterday, the USA’s President Obama declared nearly a dozen counties in the Florida Panhandle a disaster area.

This declaration is in reference to severe storms, flooding, tornadoes and straight-line winds that battered the Florida Panhandle (and adjacent states). These events occurred on consecutive days from March 29 to April 4 and yet again on April 13.

Here, the main image shows the western part of the Florida Panhandle (right), as well as the shoreline of Alabama (center right), Mississippi (center left) and Louisiana (left), in a cloud-free moment towards the end of the initial 7-day period of rain. Sediments can be seen along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, particularly near New Orleans (left) and St. George’s Sound (right).

The second image shows storm clouds over the panhandle two days earlier, dumping rain on the area. Upon opening the full image, these clouds can be observed covering much of the Mid-west and Northeast, all the way up to the Great Lakes.

The map shows the incredible rainfall took place during the seven-day period ending on March 31. Since that time, in some areas another 8 to 16 inches of rain has fallen, reports the Weather Channel.

Rainfall around Panhandle (source:

Rainfall around Panhandle

Tuesday’s order calls for federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts. Federal funding will be available to the state, eligible local governments and some nonprofit organizations to repair damage caused by the severe weather. Counties included in the order are Bay, Calhoun, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Liberty, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Walton and Washington. Federal funding also will be available for hazard mitigation measures statewide.

Federal disaster aid has also been requested for Florida’s two neighbors, Alabama and Georgia. In Georgia, a presidential disaster declaration covering 33 counties struck by severe weather and floods was requested by the state’s governor, according to the Associated Press.

In Alabama, a federal disaster declaration was sought by the governor after storms hit 20 counties in south and central parts of the state and caused about $26 million in damage to roads, bridges and public buildings from March 30 to April 3.

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