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UF/IFAS Extension Responds to Hurricane Michael

As I write this, Hurricane Michael is bearing down on Florida’s Panhandle as a dangerous Category 4 hurricane. It is shaping up to be a major storm that will potentially cause a great deal of damage from storm surge, wind and rain. I encourage everyone to take necessary precautions to protect yourself and your family as we prepare for this major hit later today.

For those of you in the storm’s path, know that our Extension family is here to support you as necessary. Dr. Angie Lindsey, Dr. Pete Vergot and a host of others are working to ensure that mechanisms and measures are in place to work with you and support you. Do not be afraid to ask for help as necessary from your Extension family.

Across the Panhandle and throughout the Big Bend region of the Gulf Coast, Extension directors and faculty are staffing emergency operations centers and shelters, answering phones, and providing assistance where needed. After the storm passes, they will be out assisting in recovery efforts and assessing the damage. A new damage assessment tool is in place to help agricultural producers assess and document damage to their crops.

Whether you live in the path of the storm or not, UF/IFAS Extension has resources that can help you make quick and informed decisions about what to do before, during and after the storm hits. Two particularly helpful sources of information are listed below:

You can also keep informed about hurricane response efforts by following UF/IFAS Extension on social media. Use and look for tags @UFIFASNews on Facebook and @UF_IFAS on Twitter.

Please contact Ruth Borger (rborger@ufl.edu) with questions and updates regarding hurricane communication.

Responsiveness is what Extension is all about. We didn’t get a lot of advance warning about Michael, but in fact we’ve been preparing for years, and just as with Hurricane Irma and other events in the past, UF/IFAS Extension is ready and positioned to help Floridians ride out the storm, recover in its wake, and prepare for whatever happens next.

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