TALLAHASSEE – The State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) transitioned today to a Level 3 monitoring status for the Deepwater Horizon event. State emergency response officials will continue to respond to impacts as they are reported to the State Watch Office and ensure proper cleanup occurs as needed.
“Though the State EOC activation has come to an end, the State Emergency Response Team remains committed to protecting Florida’s coastline from this disaster,” said David Halstead, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management. “Our state has a robust system in place for responding to reports of oil product on our shores and we will continue to be vigilant in ensuring reported impacts are cleaned up immediately.”
The State EOC initially activated on April 30 in response to this event. Today marks day 120 of activation, which is the second longest activation in EOC history, behind the 137 day activation for the 1998 wildfire season.
As part of this transition, the Florida Oil Spill Information Line (FOSIL) will deactivate after today. Callers seeking state information regarding the oil spill should view the Deepwater Horizon Florida website at www.deepwaterhorizonflorida.com or call the BP Community Information Line at 1-866-448-5816 or the Gulf Coast Claim Facility at 1-800-916-4893.
The most recent seven days of oil impact reports received by the State Watch Office and any continuing impacts to Northwest Florida’s coastline as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill will be posted on the Deepwater Horizon Florida website at the following link: http://www.dep.state.fl.us/deepwaterhorizon/impact.htm. Potential oil sightings should continue to be reported to the State Watch Office at 877-2-SAVEFL (877-272-8335) or by dialing #DEP from most cell phones.
It is likely that beaches in Northwest Florida will continue to receive isolated impacts, mainly scattered tar balls, in the coming months caused by natural tides and weather conditions. It is possible that immediately following any tropical activity, lingering ocean swells and higher tides could push offshore tar ball fields closer to the coast. State emergency management officials continue to coordinate with federal, state and local partners to ensure that any further impacts to Florida’s coastline are removed quickly and efficiently.
State emergency response officials remain dedicated to protecting Florida’s beaches and the health and well-being of its residents, visitors and wildlife. Visit www.deepwaterhorizonflorida.com or follow www.twitter.com/FLDEPalert to learn more about Florida’s response to the Deepwater Horizon incident, find a listing of phone numbers, and more.