Florida News Sep 9

By: AP
By: AP

PENSACOLA BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Florida Panhandle officials are still clearing massive piles of sand pushed ashore by Hurricane Isaac over roads through Gulf Islands National Seashore.
Officials had hoped to reopen the Pensacola Beach park this weekend. The sand cleared so far has created a canyon of sand 8 to 10 feet high.
Park Superintendent Dan Brown told the Pensacola News Journal on Friday that sand still blocks parking lots and half the road into the park in Pensacola Beach.
A 7-mile stretch of road between Pensacola and Navarre beaches also was covered with sand in many places. Officials say the roadway will remain closed for repairs for at least two months.
Isaac made landfall Aug. 28 and soaked the Gulf Coast for days afterward.

FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Health officials in a Florida Panhandle county say one person has died from complications related to West Nile virus.
The Okaloosa County Health Department said Friday that it's the county's first death attributed to the mosquito-borne virus.
The agency's director tells the Northwest Florida Daily News that the victim died within the last week. No details about the victim were released.
The death was the county's second confirmed case of West Nile. The first case was confirmed last month.
Symptoms of West Nile include headache, fever, fatigue and dizziness. Health officials warn residents to wear mosquito repellent and drain standing water from their yards to prevent contracting the virus.

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) -- A former medical examiner has been arrested on charges of keeping human remains in a rented storage unit in the Florida Panhandle.
Dr. Michael Berkland was arrested Friday on charges of improper storage of hazardous waste, keeping a public nuisance and driving with a suspended license. He was released from jail on $10,000 bail.
Berkland's attorney says he'll start preparing his defense next week.
More than 100 crudely preserved brains, hearts and lungs were discovered in a Pensacola storage unit last month. Authorities say the organs were kept in soda cups and plastic food containers.
The director of the medical examiner's office in Pensacola says about 10 families have been notified that their relatives' remains were in the unit. Berkland worked at the medical examiner's office from 1997 to 2003.

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