PALATKA, Fla., Sept. 18, 2017 — Just a week ago, Hurricane Irma pummeled the Florida peninsula, causing severe flooding and wind damage across the 18 counties of the St. Johns River Water Management District. Since then, the district has been working with local governments and other stakeholders in their recovery efforts by reducing floodwater flows to the north, providing pumps and personnel to lessen localized flooding, and assessing damage from the storm.
“I am very proud of the dedication and work of district staff in preparing for the storm in advance, their work during the storm and their quick response afterward,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “Without hesitation, they jumped into action to assist local governments and residents by getting pumps deployed to help alleviate flooding as soon as storm conditions allowed us to safely do so. When our neighbors and partners need us, we are committed to stand ready to help.”
“The city of Hawthorne greatly appreciates the assistance from the St. Johns River Water Management District in the loan of the water pump,” said Hawthorne City Manager Ellen Vause. “We had a neighborhood flooded from Hurricane Irma with 1–2 two feet of water in homes. The pump drained the area in 24 hours; now we are maintaining the retention pond with a smaller pump while the area dries out. The willingness of the district to partner with its communities for resources and help is an excellent example of good stewardship and cooperation.”
“I want to express my sincere appreciation for the district’s assistance provided to Putnam County in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew,” said interim Putnam County Administrator Stacey Manning. “The pump they provided helped to maintain the safety of the residents of Palatka Healthcare, and the four ATVs were invaluable in our being able to access otherwise inaccessible locations where roads were flooded and/or washed out. I look forward to our continued spirit of cooperation in the future.”
“The district provided two pumps to assist in draining areas of St. Johns County impacted by Hurricane Irma,” said Benjamin W. Bright, St. Johns County Road and Bridge manager. “The district’s assistance accelerated the reduction of flooding, reducing impact and allowing faster restoration. The efforts of their staff to establish and maintain the pumps is greatly appreciated.”
Recovery efforts continue in the district. Current missions include:
For continuing updates, visit the district’s website, www.sjrwmd.com.