Hurricane Michael: Claims 18 lives so far, search continues in affected areas

15 October, 2018, 20:08 | Author: Darnell Taylor
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In hurricane-flattened Mexico Beach, crews with backhoes and other heavy equipment scooped up splintered boards, broken glass, chunks of asphalt and other debris Sunday.

The scientific research group Climate Central says unless the rate of greenhouse gas emissions changes, hurricanes are expected to intensify more rapidly in the coming decades.

Michael was one of the most powerful hurricanes to ever make landfall in the U.S., and the Gulf Coast community of Mexico Beach, which housed about 1,000 people, was in its bullseye.

Three days after Hurricane Michael unleashed its wrath in the Florida Panhandle, residents in some of the hardest hit areas are growing desperate for food and water.

Long also added that FEMA employees were going to start going through shelters and in damaged neighborhoods to start registering people for federal assistance that is available to residents after a disaster. The small seaside community had a lot of older mobile homes and low-income year-round residents working in the commercial fishing and service industries.

At midday Sunday, an estimated 79 people were unaccounted for in Mexico Beach, said Capt. Iggy Carroll, public information officer for Florida Task Force Two, a search-and-rescue team from South Florida that has probed debris in Mexico Beach since Thursday.

A framed portrait of Jesus was propped Sunday facing out of the window of Diana Hughes' home in Mexico Beach.

Her husband, Steven, was killed when an oak tree smashed their home in Gretna, Florida, and landed on top of him.

Hours after Hurricane Michael left her home in ruins, Gayle Sweet refused to leave.

An emailed statement Sunday afternoon from the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency said that included customers of Georgia Power, the cooperatvies of the Georgia Electric Membership Corporation and various municipalities. "We need food. It's just insane".

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However, they ended up staying at a home in Youngstown, Florida, located 20 miles from Panama City, which was also devastated during Hurricane Michael. "We still don't have an accurate assessment of how many people we have cut off from everybody else", said Rubio. He said the storm took out his house, built in the mid-'80s, as well as newer buildings put up recently.

"We understand what we are doing is helping people and it's needy, it has to be done". Almost five days after the destructive storm made landfall, the Washington Post reported on Sunday that an estimated "200,000 Floridians are still sleeping in the dark and unable to operate their well water pumps".

Many people across the Panhandle are struggling to meet some of their basic needs.

"It's about to get stupid if people don't get food and water", Panama City Assistant Fire Chief Gary Swearingen said Saturday. There's been animals killed. About 1,500 people, including doctors, nurses and patients, rode out the storm. Official said someone from another county was using an aerial mapping app, noticed the distress message and contacted authorities.

The Husker State heroes weren't the only ones who rushed to help.

While Nelson visited multiple emergency operations centers and met with leaders at hard hit Tyndall Air Force Base. The Florida Democrat and member of the Armed Services Committee said older buildings on the base were demolished, while newer ones will need substantial repairs. Bill Nelson are touring many hard-hit spots.

While there might not be more storms in a warmer climate, most studies show storms will get stronger and produce more rain. Utility poles were bent, snapped and dangling limply from wires throughout Mexico Beach and nearby areas hammered by the storm.

Steve Lonigan was outside his home, talking with neighbor Jim Ostman, when a loud cracking sound made both men jump.

Another resident said, "The devastation - it's like a bomb just went off here". The wind shredded the roof of his single-story home.

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