Escambia Co. Emergency Operations

National Hurricane Ctr.

Meet Tropical Storm Barry. The low pressure system meandering off the Gulf Coast is strengthening, and could become Hurricane Barry by this weekend. This is prompting calls to go out for residents to be ready.

Barry, at last check, is about 95 miles south-southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River, moving west at five miles an hour. For now, it’s a borderline tropical storm with 40 mile an hour sustained winds.

NOAA

Escambia County’s Annual Hurricane Exercise was held Wednesday morning, in preparation for the season that kicks off next month.

The joint was jumping at the Escambia Emergency Operations Center on W Street. About 90 organizations — public safety, first responders, utilities, service groups and private firms — went through their paces testing equipment and reviewing procedures.

The scenario for 2019: Hurricane Smith is bearing down on Florida, with the entire state bracing for wherever and whenever the storm makes landfall, packing whatever.