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US Hurricane Irma: Lack of power, blocked roads add to frustrations

12:30  14 september  2017
12:30  14 september  2017 Source:   cnn.com

Puerto Rico declares state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Irma

  Puerto Rico declares state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Irma Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló on Monday declared a state of emergency and activated the National Guard in preparation for the landfall of Irma, a dangerous Category 3 hurricane. "Despite the economic challenges Puerto Rico is facing, the approved budget has $15 million for the emergency fund," Rosselló said in a statement.Irma, which is forecast to strengthen on Tuesday night, is set hit the U.S. territory on Wednesday, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

Hurricane Irma 's furious march through Florida not only darkened millions of homes, it also flooded roads and piled them with debris, blocking off access to neighborhoods. Power outages hit other Southeastern states, including Georgia, where more than 125

Hurricane Irma 's furious march through Florida not only darkened millions of homes, it also flooded roads and piled them with debris, blocking off access to neighborhoods. Power outages hit other Southeastern states, including Georgia, where more than 125

A home on Big Pine Key was ripped apart by the Category 4 hurricane.© Joe Raedle/Getty Images A home on Big Pine Key was ripped apart by the Category 4 hurricane.

Days after Hurricane Irma tore through Florida and left millions without power, residents are slowly returning to find ruins in some of the hardest-hit neighborhoods.

Recovery is only getting started, and some areas are still flooded. Utility companies are working to rapidly restore power to the battered Florida Keys, as frustrated residents who evacuated emerge from shelters ready to go home.

About 3.2 million utility customers remain without power in the state, Gov. Rick Scott said Wednesday. Parts of central and southern Florida will be a sweltering 90 degrees for several days, with humidity making it feel like the mid-90s.

Powerful Hurricane Irma hits first Caribbean islands

  Powerful Hurricane Irma hits first Caribbean islands <p>The most powerful Atlantic Ocean hurricane in recorded history has made its first landfall in the islands of the northeast Caribbean.</p>The National Weather Service said the eye of Hurricane Irma passed over Barbuda around 1:47 a.m. Residents said over local radio that phone lines went down as the eye passed.

Hurricane Irma : Lack Of Power , Blocked Roads Add To Frustrations In Florida - Duration: 6:56. LOOK AT THE SKY OMG!!!! Hurricane Irma Landfall Puerto Rico Dominican Republic Cuba Barbuda Antigua - Duration: 3:22.

Those on the west coast, where Hurricane Irma made landfall, will likely have power restored by September 22, according to Florida Power & Light Others don't have access to their homes due to debris and piles of brush blocking roads . Frustrations grew Wednesday when some residents tried

Scott urged first responders to check health care facilities after eight patients died at a nursing home with no air conditioning three days after Irma ravaged the state.

Relief is days away for those suffering the high temperatures. Those on the west coast, where Hurricane Irma made landfall, will likely have power restored by September 22, according to Florida Power & Light Co.

Customers who lost electricity on Florida's eastern side will likely have it restored by this weekend because fewer electrical poles came down than in other parts of the state, the company said.

Hurricane Irma's furious march through Florida not only darkened millions of homes, it also flooded roads and piled them with debris, blocking off access to neighborhoods.

Cost of Irma to Barbuda seen at $150 million - prime minister

  Cost of Irma to Barbuda seen at $150 million - prime minister The "absolute devastation" wrought by Hurricane Irma to the Caribbean island of Barbuda has caused estimated damages of some $150 million, Gaston Browne, the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, said on Wednesday. "This rebuilding initiative will take years," Browne told local television after a visit to the island, where he confirmed at least one person had died due to the storm.

CNN. Hurricane Irma : No power , blocked roads add to frustrations in Florida CNN (CNN) Days after Hurricane Irma tore through Florida and left millions without power , residents are slowly returning to find ruins in some of the hardest-hit neighborhoods.

Hurricane Irma 's furious march through Florida not only darkened millions of homes, it also flooded roads and piled them with debris, blocking off access to neighborhoods. Massive power outages have crippled other Southeastern states, including Georgia, where more than 224

Massive power outages also crippled other states, including Georgia, where hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses organizations did not have power Wednesday.

'I didn't think it would be that bad'

Jessica Gonzalez is back in her Florida neighborhood of LaBelle, but the heat is keeping her outdoors.

Her home was damaged by the storm and has no power. She celebrated her 20th birthday this week by waking up in her car with her husband and 2-year-old daughter.

They cook outside and sleep in their car.

"I honestly didn't think it would be that bad. You hear a lot it's Category 5, but you really don't think it's going to hit your house," Gonzalez told CNN's Ed Lavandera, referring to how strong Irma was when it left the Caribbean islands and set sights on Florida.

With no power and the house caving in, fellow LaBelle residents Bob and Tara Hahn have moved their 10 children into their oldest daughter's two-bedroom house.

Richard Branson says Hurricane Irma 'utterly devastated' his private island

  Richard Branson says Hurricane Irma 'utterly devastated' his private island <p>According to a Virgin Group spokesperson and now confirmed by Branson himself, Necker Island has been severely damaged by Irma.</p>According to a Virgin Group spokesperson and now confirmed by Branson himself, Necker Island has been severely damaged by Irma.

Days after Hurricane Irma tore through Florida and left millions without power , residents are slowly returning to find ruins in some of the hardest-hit neighborhoods. Recovery is only getting started, and some areas are still flooded.

People on the west coast, where Hurricane Irma made landfall, will likely have power restored by Sept. Frustrations grew Wednesday when some residents tried to return home along a two-lane stretch of highway through the Florida Keys only to be told it was not yet safe enough.

During the storm, a giant tree crashed into their home, sending whipping rain pouring inside. There's no power and no answers on when it'll be back.

Officials told them it'll take weeks, they said. As they wait, they have 17 people living under one roof.

'There's nothing here'

Power is just one of many concerns for the residents. Others don't have access to their homes due to debris and piles of brush blocking roads.

Frustrations grew Wednesday when some residents tried to go home along a two-lane stretch of highway through the Florida Keys, but were told it's not safe enough to return home.

In Big Pine Key, houses were reduced to splinters. Boats were scattered across land -- a reminder that streets turned into rivers when the hurricane hit.

Richard Tabacco stayed with his family on the island through the storm. They are all OK -- a generator is keeping them cool, he said. But he is warning residents who evacuated to stay away.

"There's nothing here," he told CNN's Chris Cuomo, who accompanied a search-and-rescue team on Wednesday. "There's no gas, there's no water. There's no stores. There's no electricity. There's no cellphone service. Just stay away for about two weeks."

Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago Resort Ordered to Evacuate

  Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago Resort Ordered to Evacuate President Donald Trump‘s seaside resort Mar-a-Lago and the surrounding barrier islands have been ordered to evacuate as the ferocious Hurricane Irma approaches Florida.&nbsp;President Donald Trump‘s seaside resort Mar-a-Lago and the surrounding barrier islands have been ordered to evacuate as the ferocious Hurricane Irma approaches Florida.

Hurricane Irma : Lack Of Power , Blocked Roads Add To Frustrations In Florida - Duration: 6:56. FEMA BLOCKING AID WORKERS FROM THE Florida KEYS 9/14/2017 - Duration: 4:13. gary larrabee 2,158 views.

Hurricane Irma ’s furious march not only it flooded streets and piled them blocking off access to neighborhoods. Massive power outages have crippled other states, including Georgia, Thursday, where businesses organizations and more than 290,000 houses did not have electricity.

"Let the first responders ... do their job, and y'all can come back later," he added.

Still, anxious residents wanted to return home.

At a checkpoint on Lower Matecumbe Key, sheriff's deputies turned away people trying to get to their homes in the lower Keys. Instead of going back, many pulled their cars over to the side of the highway, sat and waited.

A deputy at the checkpoint said they were trying to keep people safe, but some residents said they knew the risks and were willing to accept them.

Many wanted to survey the damage; others wanted to prevent looting.

Deadly storm

At least 33 storm-related deaths have been reported on the US mainland, according to local officials. They include 26 in Florida, four in South Carolina and three in Georgia. The total number doesn't include the nursing home deaths, which police said are under investigation.

The nursing home deaths Wednesday in Hollywood prompted officials to call for action. Florida has the largest percentage of residents age 65 or older -- 19.1%, according to the Pew Research Center.

"I'm going to aggressively demand answers on how this tragic event took place," the governor said. "... I am also asking available first responders to immediately check in with the health care facilities in their area to make sure nursing homes and assisted living facilities are able to keep their residents safe."

Before the hurricane smashed into the US mainland over the weekend, it struck northern Caribbean islands, leaving at least 44 people dead, authorities said.

Irma, which stretched 650 miles from east to west, has pummeled at least nine states -- deluging streets, knocking over trees and destroying homes along the way.

President Donald Trump plans to visit the region Thursday to see the devastation.

CNN's Miguel Marquez, Chris Boyette, Tina Burnside, Rene Marsh, Darran Simon, and Keith Allen contributed to this report.

Ernie Els pulls out of KLM Open to stay in Irma-hit Florida .
Ernie Els has pulled out of the KLM Open golf tournament so he can stay with family and friends in Florida to deal with the fallout from Hurricane Irma.&nbsp;Els said in a statement Monday that his "first concern at the moment and the coming days is to support my family and our friends and staff at Els for Autism. We must be ready for the consequences of this terrible storm.

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