· Navarre Beach and Santa Rosa’s entire coastline is open. Two links to live Web cams on Navarre Beach are available at www.santarosa.fl.gov/oilspill.
· Winds and currents continue to keep the plume away from the Florida coastline for at least the next 72 hours.
· According to the NOAA oil plume model, the oil spill is 85 miles southwest of Pensacola, and is expected to be 90 miles from the Florida coastline on Saturday, May 29.
· The U.S. Small Business Administration center will be closed on Monday, May 31, in recognition of Memorial Day. Center hours will resume normal operations on Tuesday, June 1 and remain open until further notice.
· A link to Dr. Richard Snyder’s presentation at Thursday’s Board of County Commissioner’s meeting is available at www.santarosa.fl.gov/oilspill under the video heading.
· Residents are asked to stay clear of boom on beaches and in open water. Boom has been placed to protect environmentally sensitive and strategic areas and damaging or removing the boom puts those areas at risk. Crossing boom can cause serious damage to vessels.
· The EOC will return to Level 3 monitoring at the close of business today. We will continue to monitor the situation, participate in briefings and daily conference calls, remain engaged in incident activities and adjust as needed throughout the incident. Media releases will continue as needed.
· The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration National Marine Fisheries Service, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission are coordinating sea turtle nesting beach and stranding activities. BP will be contracting with Ecological Associates, Inc. to assist with sea turtle nesting beach surveys and stranding response. .
· A volunteer frequently asked questions link is now available at www.santarosa,fl.gov/oilspill under Volunteer Information as "Volunteer FAQ."
· Oil on Florida’s coastline will most likely be in the form of tar balls, oil sheen, tar patches or mats. To learn more visit For more information visit www.santarosa.fl.gov/oilspill, under the Fact Sheet and Q & A heading.
· The public is reminded that ALL suspected sightings of oil substances from the spill should be reported directly to the oil sighting hotline at 1-866-448-5816. Do not pick the substance up. When reporting to the hotline, please be ready to provided detailed sighting information, including a description and an address or prominent landmarks.
· Spill responders are asking for the public’s help in monitoring boom along the Gulf Coast. Boaters are requested to report sightings of broken, disconnected, or adrift boom; and encouraged to keep their distance from boom especially at night and in conditions of restricted visibility. Report damaged, vandalized, adrift, or stolen boom to 1-866-448-5816.
· Santa Rosa County and the State of Florida continue to make preparations to safeguard the state’s shoreline.
· In order to condense our updates, older information that is still valid including tips, links, training schedules and other information for business and residents, are now available at www.santarosa.fl.gov/oilspill.
· BP Claims for Deepwater Horizon can now be submitted at www.bp.com/claims.
· To serve the residents of Santa Rosa County, BP opened a claims office in Midway on Friday, May 14. The office is located at 5668 Gulf Breeze Parkway Unit B-9 in Gulf Breeze. Hours of operation will be 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week, until further notice.
o BP recommends anyone with a claim to call 1-800-440-0858 to help expedite the process. By calling the claims number, adjusters at the claims office will have the information prior to your visit.
o The office is located at: BP Claims Office 5668 Gulf Breeze Pkwy Unit B-9 Gulf Breeze, FL 32563
· BP claims in Florida: 3,840/ approximately $2,965,214.61 paid
o Wage Loss: 2,119 claims/ $1,406,941.77
o Loss of Income:
§ Commercial: 307 claims/ $210,476.93
§ Business Interruption: 197 claims/ $95,988.28
§ Shrimper: 99 claims/ $235,750
§ Fisherman: 388 claims/ $473,494.79
§ Oyster Harvester: 16 claims/ $2,500
§ Crabber: 5 claims/ $5,000
§ Recreational Fisherman: 4 claims/ $5,000
§ Rental Property: 368 claims/ $39,606
§ Charters: 215 claims/ $471,776.84
§ Maintenance Company: 5 claims/ $7,680
§ Seafood Processor: 8 claims/ $6,000
§ Real Estate Sales: 36 claims/ $5,000
· The fisheries, wildlife and seafood off of Florida’s coast in state waters are safe and there are no alerts at this time.
. All commercial and recreational fishing including catch and release is prohibited in the closed area; however, transit through the area is allowed. Learn more at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/bulletins/pdfs/2010/FB10-045_BP_Oil_Spill_Closure_052510.pdf
· This leaves more than 77 percent of Gulf federal waters, and all Florida state waters, still open for commercial and recreational fishing.
· The recreational red snapper season in the Gulf will remain closed until June 1. For more information on red snapper management rules and research efforts, go to MyFWC.com/Rules; click on “Fishing – Saltwater.”
· The FWC reminds Floridians and visitors that the state’s recreational and commercial fisheries have not been impacted by the oil spill and remain open for public enjoyment and commerce. Florida saltwater fishing regulations remain in effect as usual and are available online at MyFWC.com/Fishing.
· Modeling and mapping the actual and projected spill area is not an exact science. NOAA Fisheries Service strongly advises fishermen not to fish in areas where oil or oil sheens (very thin layers of floating oil) are present, even if those areas are not currently closed to fishing.
· Details can be found at: http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/
Small Business Disaster Loans Available
· Governor Crist announced that the U.S. Small Business Administration has approved disaster loan funds for businesses along Florida’s Gulf coast that have been impacted by the Deepwater Horizon incident.
o SBA representatives opened a disaster loan office on Tuesday, May 18 at the Navarre Visitor Information Center located at 8543 Navarre Parkway (U.S. Hwy 98) in Navarre. Hours of operations will be 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday- Saturday until further notice.
o More information can be found at: www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance/SERV_DISASTERASSISTANCEGOV.html
Vessels of Opportunity (boats) program
· BP is looking to contract shrimp boats, oyster boats and other vessels for hire through the Vessel of Opportunities Program to deploy boom in the Gulf of Mexico. For more information 907-301-8878.
· 128 of 1,114 contracts have been activated for the Vessels of Opportunity program in Florida.
· Submit your vessel as a vessel of opportunity skimming system: (281) 366-5511
Important Phone Numbers
· Florida Oil Spill Information Line- 1-888- 337-3569
· Fraud Hotline- 1-866-966-7226.
· Report Oiled Wildlife- 1-866-557-1401
· Report Oil Sightings- 1-866-448-5816
· BP Toll-Free Claims line- 1800-440-0858
· Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner gas price-gauging hotline: 1-800-HELP-FLA (1-800-435-7352).
General Safety Information
•www.santarosa.fl.gov•Citizens can signup to automatically receive breaking news alerts from Santa Rosa County Emergency Management via e-mail or as a text message on their cell phone at: www.santarosa.fl.gov/emergency/publicwarning.html.•The Santa Rosa County Citizen Information Line at (850) 983-INFO or 4636 is open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. daily.