13million face weeks without power after hurricane

Frederick Owens
September 13, 2017

The phenomenon, known as negative surge, meant that because the hurricane was so strong the ocean was sucked up into the storm.

Number of Floridians still in shelters as of Monday afternoon.

The islands of the Florida Keys and western parts of the state bore the brunt of the category-four hurricane. At a checkpoint near the Upper Keys, residents slept in their cars and waited for hours just to see if they still have a home. The damage in his city and in his neighborhood on Cudjoe Key didn't match those dire numbers, he said.

"We know it's challenging to be without power and I want to assure all our customers that every FPL employee is dedicated to getting the lights back on as safely and quickly as possible", Volenec said. By any measure, especially in the Lower Keys, it is a housing and humanitarian crisis that will go on for weeks.

While the Keys were under mandatory evacuation orders as Irma neared, not everyone left.

Thankfully, Freeman said he and his family were all safe after the storm passed, but "it is still hard".

"The President's action during these times demonstrate why he is a true leader who can bring the country together and get things done for the American people", said White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders. It flooded streets and coasts, swamped homes, uprooted massive trees, cast boats ashore, snapped power lines and toppled construction cranes.

Even so, the storm continues to assert its presence, with 2 to 5 inches of rain - and as much as 8 inches in isolated pockets - expected through Wednesday across SC and northern Georgia, Alabama and MS into Tennessee and North Carolina. Over 350 people were rescued from the flooding, but no casualties were reported there.

The storm is continuing to move farther inland and is approaching the Georgia-Alabama border, a hurricane center forecaster says.

Though the tropical storm's eye is moving north-northwest, bands of high winds and heavy rain can extend outward for 415 miles.

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Two tornadoes touched down in Brevard County, on the Atlantic Coast; Miami's major airport sustained damage and remained closed; and storm surges and additional flooding were expected on the Gulf Coast. "It's just going to get insane pretty quick".

"I guess I'll start from scratch", said Crockett, who runs a event and party supply business.

On Tuesday the curfew for Miami-Dade County was lifted as crews worked to clear roads. Additionally, more than 100 traffic lights were out.

The National Hurricane Center has verified Klotzbach's tally of Irma's place in history, adding that some of the figures could change when the formal Tropical Cyclone Report is released later this year.

In South Carolina, a 57-year-old man was killed after a tree limb fell on him, while a 21-year-old died in a vehicle crash, said local officials.

At least 10 deaths in the Southeast are now blamed on Irma, including people hit by falling trees or tree limbs.

Another fatality was from a auto crash in Orange County in central Florida. At least three people have died. The reason for the third death in the state is not available.

The storm also left a trail of destruction in the Caribbean, where almost 40 people were killed.

Irma devastated several Caribbean islands en route to Florida.

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