Walton County received approval today from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to move forward with the next phase of its coastal protection plan. Work will begin immediately to construct a sand berm on approximately 19.2 miles of Walton County Beaches, (not including beaches maintained by the state).
The berms, which will be approximately three feet high and 20-30 feet back from the mean high tide water line, are designed to provide a protective barrier between the shoreline and Walton County’s famous white-sand beaches. Two sets of heavy equipment will begin at the west end of the county, pushing sand seaward to create a berm that protects the beach while continuing to provide easy access to the shoreline.
“We realize this work will create some temporary disruptions for beach goers,” said Chief of Emergency Management, Captain Mike Barker. “The Public Works department will manage the process as efficiently as possible to limit any impact on our residents and guests.”
All beaches will remain open throughout the project, although some beach access will be limited when equipment is present to ensure public safety. Walton County Public Works is beginning the project this afternoon and will continue to work through the weekend until the project is complete. The department will maintain ongoing maintenance of the berms for the foreseeable future.
For regular updates on the status of conditions visit www.waltonso.org, www.swfd.org, or www.bswupdate.com. To report tar or oil on any of Walton County’s 26 miles of beaches, call 850-267-2000 and 1-866-448-5816. For more information, contact the Walton County Sheriff’s Office at 850-267-2000.
For more information on health questions, contact the Walton County Health Department at 850-892-8040 or visit www.dep.state.fl.us/deepwaterhorizon/health.htm.