Saturday, 16 February, 2019


Hurricane Michael: Patience running thin in Florida 5 days after storm

Debris caused by Hurricane Michael is seen in Mexico Beach Florida on Oct 12 2018 Debris caused by Hurricane Michael is seen in Mexico Beach Florida on Oct 12 2018
Kristine Garrett | 16 October, 2018, 18:26

A banner hangs from a damaged home as a South Florida urban search and rescue team checks for survivors of hurricane Michael in Mexico Beach, Fla., Friday, Oct. 12, 2018.

"To see this personally it's very tough", the president said.

"It is incredible, the power of the storm", Trump said in televised remarks.

The state is important to Trump not only for his hopes of being re-elected in 2020 but also as he campaigns aggressively to help Republicans expand their slim 51-49 majority in the U.S. Senate.

President Donald Trump visited Florida on Monday (Oct 15), almost a week after Hurricane Michael slammed the southern USA state, where thousands of people are struggling to survive without running water or electricity. Before the helicopter tour, Trump and Scott offered words of mutual praise. As a Category 4 hurricane on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, Michael was one of the most powerful storms to make landfall in US history.

Five days after the hurricane slammed into the Florida Panhandle, people are struggling to locate friends and loved ones who haven't been heard from, though how many residents are missing seems to be anyone's guess.

He observed many damaged homes, including one that was missing its roof, leaving the inside exposed. In some cases, only the foundations were left standing. Debris was everywhere. Near Mexico Beach, a water tower lay on its side and trucks were scattered like toys in a parking lot. On the drive toward Panama City, the president could see houses smashed by trees, bent billboards and a demolished trailer park.

"I thought that trees were going by and I realized it was our house", resident Dawn Vickers said.

Israeli humanitarian NGO IsraAID is preparing to deploy an emergency response team to northwest Florida, which has suffered brutal devastation from Hurricane Michael since it made landfall on Wednesday.

Nanya Thompson, 68, of Lynn Haven, said of the president: "He's doing this, I believe, to project a different image of himself because of all the bad publicity he's had. But I don't know that it's manmade", Mr. Trump told "60 Minutes" correspondent Lesley Stahl.

More than 190,000 homes and businesses in Florida were without electricity as of Sunday, days after the hurricane hit.

On Monday, President Donald Trump plans to visit Florida and Georgia and see the recovery effort for himself.

They also evacuated 50 to 100 people in a Lynn Haven neighborhood after discovering a gas leak while searching for victims.

Scott noted yesterday as he toured the area for a third day with Long that "one of the most frustrating problems is telecommunications".

Michael Rollins shook President Donald Trump's hand Monday at the front door of his hurricane-ravaged home in the Florida Panhandle, saying he chose to ride out the storm because he didn't have anywhere else to go.

"You're a great Governor".

Mr Scott, who is running for the USA senate, returned the praise, saying of the president: "Every time I've called, he's come through". "Every time I called, he's come through and done exactly what he said he was going to do".

The president stated that the government's immediate priorities are food, water and safety for storm victims.

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