Lowndes County, Georgia– In accordance with information disseminated by the Tallahassee Division of the National Weather Service, Lowndes County Emergency Management is currently monitoring the impacts Tropical Storm Elsa may have on the area, Wednesday. Lowndes County remains under a Tropical Storm Watch, meaning Tropical Storms conditions are possible, but the chances of our area actually experiencing true Tropical Storm conditions remains relatively low based on the current forecast. The forecast does indicate sustained winds of 20-25 mph are likely throughout the day on Wednesday. Brief gusts of low end Tropical Storm Force winds are possible. Lowndes County should expect sustained winds all day long beginning in the early morning hours on Wednesday. Due to the grounds already being saturated, winds of this magnitude have historically resulted in downed trees and power lines. In the event power is lost, citizens should report the outage to their utility provider. Downed trees on public roads, streets, bridges and right of way, should be reported by calling 911. Citizens should also take time before significant winds move into the area to secure any outdoor items such as toys, patio furniture, trampolines, awnings and umbrellas that might be relocated by wind gusts.
The main threat for Lowndes County is heavy rainfall. Lowndes County is under a Flood Watch. The current forecast indicates approximately three to four inches of widespread rainfall with isolated higher amounts possible. With the heavy rainfall, storm water infrastructure may be temporarily overwhelmed, causing localized flood of roads, streets and bridges. Water over the road may conceal hazards such as infrastructure damage. Motorists are encouraged to shelter in place during periods of heavy rain. As little as six inches of water can stall a vehicle or cause the driver to lose control. Locations of water over a roadway or bridge, should be reported by calling 911.
Lowndes County Animal Shelter would like to remind pet owners that local ordinances require pets to be safely maintained during periods of severe weather. Pets that cannot be brought indoors must be maintained in a safe environment that provides protection from the rain and winds.
The City of Valdosta is in regular communication with Lowndes County Emergency Management and is activating its storm plans to prepare for inclement weather. Preparation includes communicating with employees regarding workplace readiness, filling fuel tanks, lowering water levels at the Mill Pond to accommodate additional stormwater, checking catch basins, testing generators, and ensuring all city equipment is ready to use. The city remains vigilant and encourages residents to take storm precaution seriously for their safety and the safety of their families. City residents are encouraged to download and utilize the Valdosta Click ‘N Fix mobile app to report downed trees, flooded streets, traffic light issues, etc.
Lowndes County Emergency Management will utilize the CodeRed Emergency Notification system in the event emergency instructions are released. Citizens are encouraged to sign up for this free service by visiting www.lowndescounty.com and clicking on the CodeRed icon.
In the event of an emergency, please dial 911. However, please do not call 911 for weather information, traffic updates, road closures, etc. This information will be available through local media outlets, social media and the Lowndes County’s website, www.lowndescounty.com.
Additional information will be released as it becomes available. For more information, please contact Lowndes County Public Information Officer, Meghan Barwick, 229-671-2400 or firstname.lastname@example.org.