florida hurricanes

In the wake of Hurricane Irma, many Floridians are turning to Waffle House, as one of the few places to get a cup of coffee or a cell phone charge. But as the state begins rebuilding, the restaurant is taking on an even greater significance.

Outages in power and internet are forcing many South Florida residents to go "old school" and rely on just the telephone. We have compiled a list of indispensable numbers that you need to have on hand to report problems in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. 

 

Miami-Dade Call Center

311 or 305-468-5402 for the hearing impaired

If you’re calling from out of county the toll-free number is 1-888-311-DADE (3233)

Broward Call Center

311 or 954-831-4000 OR 954-831-3940 for hearing impaired

C.M. Guerrero / Miami Herald

Florida Power & Light officials say it could be more than 10 days before power is restored to all customers who are in the dark due to Hurricane Irma.

FP&L spokesperson Rob Gould said restoration to nearly all customers in the eastern half of the state should be completed by Sunday night.

The company expects power to be restored to western Florida — more heavily damaged by the storm — by Sept. 22.

8 Dead, Others Evacuated At Hollywood Nursing Home Without Power After Irma

Sep 13, 2017
CAITLIN OSTROFF / Miami Herald

Eight Hollywood nursing home residents died Wednesday morning in a building left without air conditioning after Irma blasted South Florida, according to authorities at the scene.


The cleanup after Hurricane Irma is a massive undertaking, after the destructive storm hit Florida and neighboring states over the weekend. In Miami, a nun chipped in to clear trees in her neighborhood — and no one, it seems, can resist a story about a chainsaw-wielding nun.

Sister Margaret Ann was spotted at work by an off-duty officer of the Miami-Dade Police Department, which posted video and images from the scene in the community of Kendall West Tuesday.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Guided only by the red glow emanating  from emergency exit signs and his cell phone's flashlight, Gerald Tinker,  navigates up and down the stairwell of his apartment building.

Tinker, 67, said the Gibson Plaza Apartments in Coconut Grove have been without electricity since Saturday, nearly four days.  Residents at the  mixed-income complex for people over 62,  said they were told a backup generator would kick in should the power go out. Tinker said it's one of the reasons the apartments were appealing to him and many others when they were searching for a home. 

R
Bryan Woolston/Reuters

More than half of Florida’s population is estimated to have lost power because of Hurricane Irma. Many of the nearly 7 million Floridians who remained without power Tuesday will likely have to wait weeks before it's restored.

It's hot and dim inside this Comfort Inn just off the interstate in Fort Myers, Fla. The power has been off for two days, ever since the heart of Hurricane Irma passed right over the city.

But Dorothea Brown seems right at ease as she flips through a newspaper in the lobby.

In fact, she says the hotel is her "second home when we have to evacuate." Brown lives at a mobile home and RV park right along the Orange River, so evacuations are a part of life. She and her family and her neighbors have a routine.

"Every time there's a storm, we come here," she says.

Now that Hurricane Irma has left Florida, gasoline supplies are slowly coming back into the state. But thousands of gas stations remain closed anyway.

That's because with electricity out throughout the peninsula, even stations that have access to gas have no way to get it into people's vehicles.

"Power is the issue. Most of these gas stations don't have backup generation that can allow the pumps to work," says John Kilduff, founding partner of Again Capital, an energy investment firm.

A grinding chorus of chain saws and generators kicked in quickly after Hurricane Irma's roar left Sweetwater, a small, mostly Spanish-speaking town west of Miami where streets were swamped, fences and trees fell, cars got stuck in floodwater and shed roofs bent like tin foil.

Some residents of Key Largo are being allowed back in Tuesday morning, but the Florida Keys are still largely without power, water, medical service and cell service. Most Keys residents are anxiously waiting to hear when they can return home, and others who stayed despite mandatory evacuations remain stranded there. More than 80 percent of customers in the Keys are currently are without power.

Florida Blue and Humana will donate $1 million each to relief and recovery efforts for those affected by Hurricane Irma, the companies announced.

Recovery From Hurricane Irma Could Cost 'Billions Upon Billions'

Sep 12, 2017
Luis Hernandez / WLRN News

Local curfews were in place throughout the state, much of the Florida Keys remained closed and millions of people continued to lack electricity as cleanup work expected to reach into the billions of dollars began Monday in the wake of deadly Hurricane Irma.

While businesses slowly reopen, the state is dealing with widespread flooding, from storm surges of 4 to 8 feet along both coasts to flash flooding in Northeast Florida.

Miami Herald

Monroe County Sheriff Rick Ramsay has declared a curfew in the Florida Keys between dusk and dawn after devastating Hurricane Irma swept through the island chain.

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