PORT SAINT JOE- Gulf County Emergency Management and this newspaper are committed to getting the most up-to-date information to the citizens of Port Saint Joe, Apalachicola and the surrounding areas. Here are the most recent storm related notices, distribution sites, and aid information.


City Manager Michael Hammond has reinstated a boil water notice for the City of Port St. Joe until further notice. The order comes as authorities investigate a potential water contamination incident upriver from the city. With reinstatement of the notice, all of Gulf County is now under a boil water notice. The Florida Department of Health offers the following tips to protect health and safety under a boil water notice:


Safe sources of drinking water include bottled, disinfected or both boiled and cooled water. Here are some general rules on using water for drinking and cooking:

Do not use contaminated water to wash dishes, brush your teeth, wash and prepare food or make ice. Use only safe drinking water.

If you use bottled water, know where it came from. Drink only commercially available bottled, boiled or disinfected water until your supply is tested and deemed safe. Otherwise, water should be disinfected or both boiled and cooled before use. 

Boiling water kills harmful bacteria and parasites. Bringing water to a rolling boil for 1 minute will kill infectious organisms (germs). 

Water can be disinfected by adding 8 drops of plain unscented household bleach (4 to 6-percent strength), which is about 1/8 teaspoon or a dime-sized puddle, per gallon of water. If a higher strength bleach is used (8.25-percent strength), only add 7 drops of bleach. Mix the solution and let it stand for 30 minutes. If the water is cloudy after 30 minutes, repeat the procedure once. Iodine or other disinfection tablets (available at many sporting goods departments and stores) may also be used.

Containers for water should be rinsed with a bleach solution of 1 tablespoon of bleach per gallon of water before reusing them. Use water storage tanks and other types of containers with caution. For example, fire truck storage tanks, as well as previously used cans or bottles, may be contaminated with microbes or chemicals. Do not rely on unverified methods for decontaminating water.

For further information, please contact your local county health department or visit www.floridahealth.gov or www.FloridaDisaster.org.

During severe weather and other emergencies, you can count on active alerts from the department's official social media accounts. One of the fastest ways to receive official and accurate health-related information is to monitor @HealthyFla on Twitter and on Facebook.