BTW: I am boycotting the EOC – a facility set up miles away from our beaches, a facility that was built to be a bomb shelter to withstand hurricanes, a facility with tight security to deal with the crises that surround a hurricane. Escambia County is treating the BP Oil Spill like a hurricane. It’s not. Officials need to be downtown, at Pensacola Beach and at Perdido Key—Not W Street.
The County has banned the media from the operations area and isolated journalists in a separate room -where we have to listen to presentations over speakers while Sean Dugas talks over the speakers as he gives the pnj.com the blow-by-blow so that the daily marketing solution can post something on the site before I can do so on the blog. The pretty TV faces and their fat, unshaven camera men laugh, exchange gossip with the out-of-town crews, ignore what’s happening in the ops room and wait to control the upcoming press conference.
Escambia County is treating this like a hurricane…it’s not and the people who can help get the word out the best are left out. I refuse to play by a set of rules that make no sense in this crisis – except to protect BP, DEP and the bureaucrats. Fortunately, most elected officials answer my calls and the state officials are stopping by the office. The EOC is irrelevant to our coverage.