The following information is provided in order from most recent to least recent. If you’re reading this information for the first time, please start with Update #1 and work your way up. Click to view:
- Tuesday, July 26, 2005, Continued Recovery Efforts
- Friday, July 15, 2005, Update #7
- Thursday, July 14, 2005, Update #6
- Wednesday, July 13, 2005, Update #5
- Tuesday, July 12, 2005, Update #4
- Monday, July 11, 2005, Update #3
- Monday, July 11, 2005, Update #2
- Friday, July 8, 2005, Update #1
Tuesday, July 26, 2005, Continued Recovery Efforts
FOR ALL RESIDENTS OF HOLIDAY ISLE
We continue to make great strides recovering the Isle from Hurricane DENNIS. Folks have returned to their properties and have resumed normal activities while many of our hardest hit neighbors have embarked on the long path to recovery. Let’s keep those folks in our thoughts and prayers.
We have some more information you may find helpful. This update covers four main areas:
- The process for obtaining emergency assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA);
- The plan for recovery of our canals and common areas structure impacted by the storm;
- The current City of Destin plan for managing debris removal; and
- The latest information from the City of Destin regarding restoration of the beach and dune area.
FEMA Assistance: Last week, members of the FEMA regional staff visited the Association and provided information to pass to residents affected by Hurricane DENNIS. The largest part of FEMA assistance is low interest loans to offset costs incurred directly related to the storm. As you might expect with any such governmental program, there are a variety of stipulations and conditions. If you sustained losses or damage, you may be eligible for disaster aid from FEMA. You need to call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) and apply for aid. You will be given a case number to document your call and claim. IT’S CRITIAL YOU CALL EARLY AND OBTAIN THIS CASE NUMBER EVEN IF YOU ARE UNSURE ABOUT THE TOTAL SCOPE OF YOUR CLAIM . There are some fairly strict timelines on application for aid. When you call, you will need your Social Security Number (including spouse), any private insurance information, address and zip code of the damaged property, directions to the property and a good daytime telephone number.
Canals and Common Areas Recovery: You have seen the progress our contractor is making along Gulf Shore Drive clearing sand from the right of way. The sidewalks are now open and we are continuing to clear sand from the road sides. The irrigation system is largely intact and John and Joey have started their effort to recover the landscaping. As soon as the right of way is clear, work will commence to rebuild the beach crossovers. We urge all residents and guests to exercise extreme caution in any areas where recovery work is in progress.
We conducted a survey of the canals last week. We have some sand removal to accomplish on the canals but they are in better shape than we thought they would be. The canal system south of Magnolia was the hardest hit and will be the first area targeted for clearing so it can be made navigable again. We also have some palm trees and other debris to clear from the canal system but it’s much less than what we thought we would encounter. We’ll get to work clearing that debris as soon as possible.
Debris Removal: The City of Destin has begun to remove debris from the city areas. We anticipate the Public Works Department may get to Holiday Isle by the later part of this week. Please segregate your debris as specified in previous web updates. Remember, the City WILL NOT take an appliance which has not been cleared of Freon or other refrigerant and appropriately tagged by a certified air conditioning specialist. Let’s help the City out here with a tough job and do our part to keep costs down.
Beach and Dune Restoration: Probably no other subject is more critical (and emotional) than the topic of beach and dune restoration. Daily we get calls about the disposition of the sand we have cleared from the right of way. In essence, the policy is the sand that came off the beaches on Holiday Isle will be returned to the beaches on Holiday Isle. That policy is for the betterment of the entire community and is the greatest way to leverage the limited sand we have available for the safety of all residents.
Yesterday, Billy and I met with the City Manager where he shared the “way ahead” for the City to start the recovery effort for the beaches.
The City of Destin has been issued a permit for a one time beach scraping to COMPLEMENT THE RETURN OF OVERWASHED SAND TO THE DUNE AREA. Therefore, we have a requirement that the sand on Holiday Isle be used and returned to the beaches on Holiday Isle to construct a dune/berm for the greatest protection of all residents.
- The City of Destin will pay the costs for the cleaning of sand on the Isle as well as placing it on the dune/berm area.
- The Association has been granted permission to use some of the sand to repair our common areas and to build up select lots where practical where water breaches Gulf Shore Drive . It’s in the entire Association’s interest that sand is returned to these areas to help mitigate future damage to the entire community caused by breaches during high water periods.
- We’ll need the cooperation of all property owners when the beach scraping effort makes it’s way to the Isle so we complete this project safely. Additionally, the permit has restrictions and safeguards in place for the protection of marine turtle nests and will only proceed during daylight hours.
- The City is hopeful the State may grant additional beach scraping if needed but that is far from assured. We’re hopeful this initial effort will provide some measure of protection.
One final note – Billy’s last day with the Association will be Friday 29 July. Billy and Jo Ann will be sorely missed by all of us and we wish them fair winds and following seas as they embark on a new chapter in their lives in Tampa FL.
I will be using Billy’s same cell phone number at 865-6713.
We’ll continue to keep you updated as our recovery effort continues.
Randy and Billy
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Friday, July 15, 2005, Update #7
FOR ALL RESIDENTS OF HOLIDAY ISLE
1. It was a welcome sight yesterday to have our residents return to the Isle and begin damage assessment and recovery efforts.
The power, water and sewer infrastructure has been restored with the exception of Lands End area. Lands End has water but no commercial power. The Isle water boiling advisory was lifted yesterday afternoon. Individual utility outages remain here and there but they are being addresses by the property owners along with the respective utility company providers. Recovery efforts have begun in earnest and the curfew has been lifted.
2. WHAT DO I DO WITH DEBRIS? This morning we received information from the City of Destin Public Works Department about debris removal. The City will remove debris from Holiday Isle homeowners if it is placed in the right of way. We ask that you do not place debris on the right of way until we have been able to remove any excess sand.
Debris MUST be segregated into the following pile system for the City to pick it up.
Large vegetative material that CANNOT be bagged (large limbs, trees, tree branched, etc)
Construction and Demolition Materials (Wood, seawall debris, dock debris, roofing material, etc)
BAGGED small yard waste (leaves, mulch, small twigs, bush trimmings, etc)
“White Goods” (i.e. appliances, other large debris not fitting in the categories above): While we do not anticipate a large number of appliances and other materiel from this hurricane, we know there will be some.
IMPORTANT NOTICE : The City of Destin WILL NOT pick up any refrigerator, freezer, air conditioner or any other appliance that uses Freon until the appliance has been drained of Freon and so tagged by licensed appliance or refrigeration personnel. Most air conditioning specialists can do this service but it is the property owner’s responsibility to have this important service performed before the City will pick up the appliance.
Roofing contractors are responsible for removal of any roofing materials replaced on homeowner’s properties.
** Note: All of our landfills are becoming increasingly utilized due to the extreme volume of debris from this and past storms. We’re counting on all residents to not abuse the service the City provides. Now is probably not the time to do the annual spring cleanup and clear out the attic, garage and carport. The Association thanks you for your understanding and support in this area.
3. Isle Recovery Efforts : Right now, your Association is engaged in damage assessment and retaining contractors to initiate the recovery process. Our first priority is to re-plant as many downed palm trees as we can as soon as we can. We’ve had folks working on that already and that will continue this weekend. We’re solicited and received bids for clearing of the right of way of sand. We’ll be doing this work ourselves so we can retain the sand on the Isle for further utilization and restoration efforts.
4. Reclaimed water : Right now, the reclaimed water is turned off because the salinity and fluoride levels are excessive and if used for irrigation, it will kill vegetation. The water will be turned on when it meets Destin Water Users standards for quality and is suitable for irrigation.
5. This update will conclude the daily Hurricane DENNIS updates. We’ll continue to post information on this website of interest for all residents. Please let us have your feedback on the benefit of using the internet for these updates. We’re very much interested in your feedback.The Association would like to thank all residents for their support and understanding during this challenging time. We look forward to working in partnership with you to recovery the Isle and return it to pre-hurricane conditions as soon as practical.
Randy and Billy
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Thursday, July 14, 2005, Update #6
FOR ALL RESIDENTS OF HOLIDAY ISLE:
1. We are happy to report that the majority of utility services have been restored to the Isle. There are some caveats:
- The OVERHEAD power distribution system has been energized. That is mainly on the north side of Gulf Shore Drive . The power companies have no way of knowing the status of the underground (south) side of Gulf Shore Drive until the residents and condo managers return and see what the power conditions are on their property. IF the power is not restored, Gulf Power is now accepting trouble calls on their automated outage reporting system. Call GULF POWER at 1-800-GUPOWER (1-800-487-6937).
- Water has been restored to the Isle with the exception of Destin Pointe and Lands End areas. There has been extensive damage to the Land’s End infrastructure which requires repair. We toured that area this morning and the area is unreachable by vehicle currently. Destin Water Users is working to find a way to isolate that area and restore service to Destin Point as quickly as possible.
- Both phone and cable contractors and companies are on the Isle attempting to restore service.
- We understand some of the RED and GREEN TAGS the City used to denote building condition have been blown off properties by the wind. Residents should contact the City of Destin Building Inspector Office for information on their specific property condition if the tags are not visible. That phone number is 850-654-1119.
2. At 9:00AM this morning, the City of Destin opened the Isle for travel without restrictions. The Sheriff will maintain a checkpoint until sometime this afternoon to allow condo managers to get their security personnel on sight. Residents are free to come and go on the Isle at their will.
3. Recovery efforts are underway. Members of the Association Board have toured the Isle and we are soliciting proposals to effect repair of the crossovers, right of ways and landscaping infrastructure.
4. DEBRIS…DEBRIS…DEBRIS!! WHAT DO I DO WITH IT??? The City of Destin is providing specific instructions for debris removal tomorrow, 15 July. We ask residents to refrain from placing debris on the rights of way until we get specific details from the City. We’ll publish details as soon as we can. We know how important it is to you and are working it hard, but do NOT dump debris on the right of way. Please work with us here.
5. SAFETY REMAINS PARAMOUNT. DESPITE BEING OPEN, THE ISLE REMAINS A DANGEROUS PLACE . There is a heavy traffic load, the stop lights are out and all intersections should be treated as a 4-way stop. Visibility is compromised due to piles of sand. SLOW DOWN, keep your eyes open and exercise extreme caution driving on the Isle.
We’ll provide additional information as soon as it becomes available this afternoon.
Randy and Billy
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Wednesday, July 13, 2005, Update #5
FOR ALL HOLIDAY ISLE RESIDENTS
- I’m happy to report that great progress was made today completing damage assessments and a tremendous effort was put forth by utility companies. Destin Water Users (DWU), myriad power companies and yes, even the cable TV folks are on the Isle trying to get the ball rolling on restoring service. Here are today’s highlights:
- Damage assessments are complete. The GREEN and RED TAGS are in place on all properties along with what you need to do to get the properties back to standard. Sadly, there are RED TAGS on both several individual homes and condo complexes. All of us with less damage need to remember these folks in our thoughts and prayers and do what we can to assist them in their recovery.
- Water and sanitary sewer services are restored to the greatest part of the Isle. Some outages remain, including Destin Pointe, due to some infrastructure problems that still need to be addressed. HOWEVER, the water is NOT POTABLE so the Isle remains under a boiling restriction. DWU is sampling and testing the water and working with the State to make sure all testing is complete and the water is safe to drink. We hope to have that complete within two days.
- The Destin Fire Chief called and advised his folks will be out on the Isle assisting homeowners tomorrow and answering questions about recovery efforts. You’ll see them on ATVs and 4 X 4s. Their primary purpose is to monitor our recovery efforts to minimize the risk of fire. Don’t forget to thank these folks for the great job they do for us each and every day.
- A virtual army of power companies from across the country are on the Isle working hard to restore power. At one time today, I counted 20 bucket trucks replacing poles, transformers and pulling power lines. Recall our infrastructure damage was greater than Ivan and with a little bit of luck, we should have power back on line this weekend. Kudos to all the outside power company folks who left their families and homes to help us out.
- The Association Office is back on line. The phone (850-837-4753) is pretty much ringing off the hook and we’re doing our best to respond to all calls. We have an extraordinary number of messages in the phone answering machine queue as well as emails and we will respond to each. Just work with us while we dig out. Our network was down until 1:30 today so the order of the day was to get the office back on line so we can best support you.
- This morning, we escorted City Councilman Mel Ponder for a review of the conditions on the Isle and the beach. We took him on a “GATOR” Tour from Noriega Point through the entire isle including the beach areas. (The “GATOR” is the Association All Terrain Vehicle) Mr. Ponder was totally engaged and committed to working with us to find a strategy to rebuild our beaches as quickly as possible. He stressed the importance in returning the Isle to condition as soon as we can so we can recover as much of our tourist season as possible. Some organizations realize as much as 40% of their annual operating profit from the month of JULY so the sooner we can get operations back on line, the better for them and all of us.
- “Windshield Tour” Day went quite well. A steady stream of owners visited the Isle and got their first look at their properties. Tomorrow, the residents WITH PASSES will have access to the Isle from 9:00AM until 3:00PM to begin their individual assessment and recovery.
- This afternoon, we passed to City Management a list with the names of property managers as well as names of their emergency essential management and recovery personnel provided to us. Those personnel should be able to obtain access to the Isle by showing a picture ID at the checkpoint tomorrow and will be allowed to come and go as needed during the period from 9:00AM until 3:00PM.
- We know the significant issues involved as well as the high level of concern that accompanies any effort to rebuild and restore the beaches. These issues will be fully discussed in the appropriate governmental and political forums. One of the issues which you will all notice upon return is how incredibly vulnerable the Isle is now without any dune or berm protection. We ask that all residents consider this as the local governments plot a strategy to recover the beaches that make Holiday Isle one of the most beautiful beaches on the planet. Partnership and collaboration will be critical here.
- GOOD NEWS! The City of Destin has most of the power restored for the area north of Highway 98 and the curfew has been lifted for that part of Destin. HOLIDAY ISLE REMAINS UNDER A 10:00PM until 6:00AM CURFEW until we can get the lights back on.
- MORE GOOD NEWS! Highway 98 is open one lane each way now. So there is an alternative way to get to Destin than the Mid-Bay Bridge. You can still anticipate delays as many folks are returning to the area. Work continues on the other lanes and will open as soon as possible.
We thank everybody for their continued cooperation and we’ll keep passing the information out as soon as it becomes available.
Randy and Billy
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Tuesday, July 12, 2005, Update #4
FOR ALL HOLIDAY ISLE RESIDENTS
- e were able to visit the Isle briefly today. While we don’t want to paint a “doom and gloom” picture, you need some realistic picture of what will await you upon your return to the Isle. Here’s what you may expect:
- The vast majority of beach walkovers are totally destroyed. Both Association beach access points are destroyed. Several yachts are beached on Noriega Point. It appears properties across from vacant Gulf-side lots sustained the heaviest damage when the rising water and storm surge washed out much sand and supporting structures. Some properties looked virtually untouched; still others sustained major damage. A few suffered catastrophic damage. The sand berms and dunes are completely gone.
- As far as an overall damage assessment, the building inspectors told me today the overall damage was less than Hurricane IVAN. Holiday Isle faired MUCH BETTER than Crystal Beach for Hurricane DENNIS. The beach is non-existent in areas of Crystal Beach with multi-million dollar homes hanging out over the Gulf and sand on pilings. Of course, there is little we can say to console our neighbors, some of who lost everything to this storm. We ask that you remember those less fortunate if major damage was spared to your property and remember these folks in your prayers as we all embark upon rebuilding our community together.
- Damage assessment activities and initial recovery operations for all of Holiday Isle continued today. Teams from the City of Destin Building Inspector Office scoured the Isle today and were able to assess approximately 75% of the structures. Following inspection, they placed RED or GREEN TAGS on the property to indicate of the dwelling was habitable (GREEN) or needed further engineering reviews or other life safety corrections before folks may move back in (RED). The City estimates to have the remaining dwellings evaluated by 1:00PM tomorrow, Wednesday 13 July 2005.
- A note of CAUTION is CRITICAL here. Some of the dwellings that have GREEN TAGS indicating they are STRUCTURALLY sound MAY have other deficiencies such as power lines on the roofs. BEFORE you enter your property on Thursday and Friday, please conduct a walk around and look closely at your property. NOBODY knows your property better than you. You may notice things the inspectors did not see, or things may have changed since their review. If you notice ANYTHING that does not look right to you, DO NOT enter the building. Contact the City of Destin Building Inspection Department at 654-1119 for clarification and instructions.
- All dwellings with RED TAGS are UNINHABITABLE. You will be able to enter SOME for brief periods but you will not be allowed to move back in until the deficiencies identified on the red tag have been cleared. MOST of the properties with RED TAGS will require an engineering or some other construction building professional review.
- Still, other buildings with RED TAGS are UNSAFE to enter AS WELL AS UNINHABITABLE. We are working with the City to clarify which ones should not be entered and hope to have a list at our office as soon as the inspection review is complete. If there is any doubt, DO NOT enter your building and contact our office or the City of Destin Building Inspector for clarification.
- Speaking of our office, this afternoon, commercial power returned to our part of the Isle. Tomorrow, we will resume our normal office hours and should be available to answer your questions or concerns. We ask for your patience if the lines are busy for we anticipate many calls as well as some momentary communications systems delays while we bring our network and telephone/fax systems back on line.
- Recovery operations have begun. Most roads are clear although some are one lane only. Utility repair is underway. It was a welcome sight to see over 20 utility trucks from New England arrive in Destin this afternoon. After a brief stop at Wal-Mart to stage and re-fuel, these folks went right to the Isle and started re-building the power infrastructure on the north side of Gulf Drive, which sustained major damage. Destin Water Users are all over the island working hard to bring the fire protection and potable water systems back on line. Okaloosa Gas is continuing their inspection of the gas line system. We are cautiously optimistic the utility systems MAY be functioning sometime this coming weekend. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.
- The plans for “windshield tours” on Wednesday and visitation from 9:00 Am until 3:00PM for Thursday and Friday remain as detailed in our previous updates. You will need a pass for access to the Isle.
- Restoration of Highway 98 towards Fort Walton Beach is progressing rapidly. There is a possibility one 2-lane stretch of that road will re-open late Wednesday or on Thursday. Sadly, when Highway 98 re-opens, we’ll lose the “good deal” of no more tolls on the Mid-Bay Bridge. Please plan accordingly.
- Destin remains under a 10:00PM until 6:00 AM curfew.
- The Mayor, City Manager and Deputy City Manager met with the Association staff again today. They are working very hard along with all their staffs to get the Isle back up as quickly as possible. The Sheriff’s Department and Marine Patrol personnel are working under incredibly tough conditions to safeguard our isle and personal property. Please take a moment to let them know how much you appreciate their service to keep looters and sightseers off the Isle. A word of thanks from residents goes a long way with these folks and I know they would appreciate it.
We will continue to post daily updates to this site until further notice.
Sincerely, Randy and Billy
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Monday, July 11, 2005, Update #3
FOR ALL HOLIDAY ISLE RESIDENTS
- On Monday, 11 July at 4:00PM, we met with the City of Destin Management Team for an update. Here’s an update:
- Damage assessment activities and road clearing continue on the Isle. With the Panhandle area, over 200,000 households are without power and over 500 miles of power lines are down. Utility companies are making progress but both power, water and sanitary sewer services will not be restored to the Isle until the end of this week AT THE EARLIEST.
- The Isle remains CLOSED. Any person found on the Isle will be detained. There is a checkpoint at Sandpiper Cove with several deputies and there are 4-6 roving patrols on the Isle on ATVs and 4-wheel drives. Florida Fish and Game personnel will be conducting patrols on the water to address people attempting to access the Isle from the water side. A curfew for City of Destin remains from 10:00PM until 6:00AM Monday night.
- Residents and property management personnel may obtain passes for Isle access starting at 9:00AM Tuesday, 12 July at the City Hall Annex (old Grace Lutheran Church) near City Hall. The passes, once issued, will be good for the duration of Hurricane DENNIS recovery efforts.
- Also on Tuesday, 12 July, Destin damage assessment teams will survey all structures on the Isle for safety and habitability. Green tags will be placed on structures which meet standards and Red tags will be placed on structures that require work before they may be occupied. The City hopes to have these assessments done by Wednesday.
- On Wednesday 13 July, the City will conduct “windshield tours” on the Isle for residents and managers/staff with passes from 9:00AM until 3:00PM. Details on where to meet will be provided when the passes are issued at the City Hall Annex.
- Currently, we hope to be able to allow residents and managers/staff with passes to have access to the Isle Thursday and Friday, 14 and 15 July from 9:00AM until 3:00 PM to visit their homes, conduct assessments and begin individual recovery efforts.
- The City of Destin website has additional information. Visit www.cityofdestin.com and click on the Hurricane DENNIS icon for additional information.
- We hope all residents return safely to the area. You can anticipate significant delays as you get closer to the area. Remember, the only way to access Destin is via the Mid-Bay Bridge.
- Most likely, there will be only one update to this site for Tuesday, 12 July and that will be late in the evening. Our webmaster is returning to Destin from her evacuation point and will be unable to post updates until back in the local area.
- Be safe and we look forward to working with you upon return.
Billy and Randy
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Monday, July 11, 2005, Update #2
FOR ALL HOLIDAY ISLE RESIDENTS:
The Association Executive Team met with the Destin City Manager this morning to get an update on local conditions and to get an estimation of when residents can return to the Isle. Here is what is going on:
- Highway 98 on Okaloosa Island is washed out. There is no access to Destin via Highway 98. Repair efforts are underway now. Access to Destin is via the Mid-Bay Bridge.
- Destin itself is in better condition than after Hurricane IVAN. The city is without power.
- On Holiday Isle, all roads are impassable currently. The Isle is CLOSED for all but emergency vehicles. There appears to be less sand on the roads than after Hurricane IVAN. Of course, there was less sand available to push away from the beach due to previous storms. Road clearing efforts are underway now.
- According to the City Manager, at first blush, there appears to be MORE extensive damage to city infrastructure on the Isle (water, sewer, power and communications) than during Hurricane IVAN.
- Sadly, there are reports of some looting at the Destin Pointe area. We understand some of the perpetrators were apprehended by local law enforcement.
WHEN CAN I SEE MY PROPERTY?
- Road clearing is ongoing now and will take several days.
- As soon as the roads are open, damage assessment teams will cover the Isle and look for downed power lines, gas leaks and safe those systems.
- The City Manager ESTIMATES that “windshield tours” will be available for residents with proper documentation of property ownership on the afternoon of Wednesday, 12 July. Report to the annex at Grace Church to obtain access via these tours as detailed in our previous messages.
- The City Manger ESTIMATES that LIMITED access to the Isle will be available for residents only on Thursday, 13 July. This access will be for a 4-5 hour period and residents must leave the Isle during for the curfew.
- Due to the danger of fire and other hazards, there will be no living on the Isle until further notice. As soon as it is safe, you will be allowed to return.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP:
- We know how stressful it is for you but the best thing you can do right now is to stay safely where you are until more recovery efforts are complete. You will not be allowed to reach the Isle. It remains closed. The Isle is under curfew and all persons will be arrested if seen on the Isle at night. We also strongly discourage traveling to the Isle via boat. The status of the canals is uncertain at this time.
Emergency crews and the Association Management Team are on site and starting the recovery efforts. We want you back on the Isle as soon as possible but not at the risk of your safety and other potential damage to property.
We’ll continue to update this website as often as possible.
Signed Billy and Randy
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Friday, July 8, 2005, Update #1
TO ALL HOLIDAY ISLE RESIDENTS:
The Association Staff understands how important it is for all of you to know what actions you are to take to insure the safety of both your families, friends and the security of your property.
On 8 July, I met with the City of Destin City Manager Staff to discuss the procedures that will happen before, during and after the storm arrives in this area. Here is what you may expect.
1. If the storm continues on its present track, you may expect a call for voluntary evacuation of the Isle most likely on the afternoon of Friday, 8 July. If events continue as forecast, the Isle will be under mandatory evacuation very early Saturday morning, 9 July. Listen to local media for evacuation decisions and recommendations. WE STRONGLY URGE YOU TO COMPLY WITH THE CALLS FOR EVACUATION. THIS STORM IS A SIGNIFICANT THREAT AND WE URGE YOU TO SECURE YOUR PROPERTY AND EVACUATE EARLY TO AVOID TRAFFIC JAMS. THE WORST PLACE YOU CAN BE DURING A HURRICANE IS TRAPPED ON THE ROADS.
2. You can anticipate the entire Isle being closed before arrival of the storm. Nobody should remain on the Isle if under mandatory evacuation. During the storm, local fire department, emergency services and law enforcement will not respond to calls for assistance during the storm.
Immediately after the storm has passed, the City and County government priority will be search and rescue efforts to save life and limb. All other issues are secondary until this effort is complete.
Following that initial lifesaving response, priority will be to secure property to prevent further loss. Law enforcement will close the Isle and will not allow any personnel on the Isle during this period. Any unauthorized persons found on the Isle after the storm will be arrested during this period. We urge residents to comply with this directive and stay off the Isle during this period, which includes efforts to reach property by boat.
As soon as life safety and property protection efforts are in place, recovery emphasis shifts to open the roads and restore emergency essential services with include sewer and fire protection water.
We understand everybody is concerned about the safety of their property and the welfare of friends. The City also recognizes this and has tentatively arranged for brief visitation once the Isle becomes passable. Once the Fire Chief determines they are passable for fire/emergency vehicles, the City plans to open the Isle for “windshield tours” conducted by City Management and law enforcement personnel. Property owners will need to bring proof of property ownership (utility bill, tax bill, etc) to this location and will be escorted on and off the isle for a general “look around”. No personnel will be allowed to leave the vehicle during this time. The intent is to provide some information to homeowners on the general status of their property, not to initiate any property recovery efforts. The isle remains CLOSED at this time. Here is what you need to do if you want to take advantage of this service:
- The City of Destin will be set up an Access Management Center at Grace Lutheran Church in the parking lot located at 4100 Two Trees Rd. (north of Destin City Hall ). Passes for access will be issued at this location and you will be allowed to sign up for the “windshield tours”. Listen to local media who will announce the opening of this site. We’ll also post information on this web site and notify the Street Captains and Condo Managers.
- Once the roads have been cleared for vehicles, the City will allow for limited visitation to property and homes, most likely in the afternoon hours. Access to the Isle will be provided through the same process outlined above. Reports to the City of Destin Access Management Center at Grace Lutheran Church at 4100 Two Trees Road north of City Hall with identification, proof of property ownership and passes will be issued as outlined above. CONDO MANAGERS WILL BE ABLE TO OBTAIN ONE PASS AND WILL HAVE TO VOUCH FOR THEIR STAFF. The Isle remains CLOSED during this period to all personnel except residents. Residents will be expected to exit the Isle at the announced curfew. Any personnel found on the isle after curfew will be arrested. Again, the priority here is the safety and security of the Isle and property.
- Once the sanitary sewer and water systems have been restored, the Isle will be opened and you may return to your property and continue recovery efforts.
- We all know the urgency we feel to return home as quickly as possible. But we all need to understand that fire and injury due to debris is a huge risk during a hurricane recovery effort. Nothing would be sadder than to have our Isle survive the hurricane and have a home lost to fire because we did not follow the directions of the Emergency management Staff. Safety remains paramount. The cooperation of all residents is critical so the emergency response folks can do their job quickly and efficiently for the safety of us all.
Again, stay tuned to local media and follow the directions of the local Emergency Management Staff. We will use every available means to pass information to you through this web site, your Condo Managers and your Street Captains. Working together, we can all get through this.
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