Planning and Preparing For Tropical Storm Fay Arrival

As Tropical Storm Fay continues to approach the Wiregrass, county and city emergency officials are constantly planning and preparing for her arrival.

Friday morning at the EMA office, multiple meetings were held to diagnose the current situation and needs.

The first meeting kicked off at 8:30AM with a web conference as officials got the very latest word on the storm path and rainfall projections. Using that information, they looked at planning options.

That pattern of information and planning will continue throughout Friday and the weekend.

Houston Co. EMA Director, Clark Matthews, says "Our biggest fear is flooding, and today, the weather service briefed us again, and cautioned us about that in low lying areas. We're on that borderline where we could not get a lot of rain, but it could change as you heard."

"If you don't know how deep the water is, don't go into it. Hopefully, the storm will continue to decrease in its power as it moves closer to us," said Dothan City Manager Mike West.

While Fay at this point appears to mean mostly just rain for the Wiregrass, emergency officials have had the opportunity to meet in preparation for other systems that could impact the area later on this year.

"We are hoping that it's not going to be anything more than a heavy rain event so it's a good planning process to get us on track for this season. It should have us prepared for the next storm should that be needed," said Capt. Chris Etheredge with the Dothan Fire Department.

The most recent briefing featured representatives from multiple agencies from the hospitals to the Red Cross to discuss needs. As of now, there are no coastal evacuations taking place, but the shelters are on standby and could take around 3500 people.

News 4 Reporter, Patrick Claybon, will be stationed at the EMA office throughout the day to give you the latest information on developments as Tropical Storm Fay approaches.

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