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 > Hurricane Irma Aftermath

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WTP-GC

FL

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Posted: 09/12/17 11:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well, what can you say...after a week of 24/7 news coverage, endless doomsday pontifications, mass evacuations, and great hysteria...the storm is gone. Lots of regional flooding, downed trees and power lines, but really limited structural damage. The only notable fatalities in FL were things like falling off ladders, heart attacks, and vehicles accidents (most of which has not been directly confirmed to be storm-related). Now we move onto the aftermath and cleanup.

To anyone looking at traveling to FL right now, for your sake, consider a change of plans. Southbound traffic is horrendous and gas station lines are backed up into the streets. I saw a report that roughly half of FL is without power. It will be at least another week before things begin to appear normal again.

Of course, after such an event, you begin to look around and wonder "what-if". You second-guess evacuation plans, storm prep efforts, travel plans, etc. We know of people who evacuated from areas that were supposed to take a direct hit, but they evacuated to an area that ended up being more in the path. Many places were (or are) limiting evacuees from returning until such time that the local officials could fully assess the damage. School systems, businesses, universities, etc. are extending their closures day-by-day, leaving many people without any ability to plan the coming days.

We didn't evacuate, and it was absolutely the right call. That was right for us, but certainly not right for everyone. We had a backup plan, generator, plenty of gas, and were well prepared. Trees near your home are certainly cause for concern, but the heavily wooded terrain we live in helped to soften the blow of the wind. Overall, it was certainly a very sleepless night and tiring lead-up. But once we recover from the restlessness, we'll be all good ;-)


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ThunderRock

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Posted: 09/12/17 12:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Glad you're safe & mostly all is well. I heard on the Weather Channel that FL State Police were asking that folks NOT come back yet as of the massive exodus back in. Gas stations are not able to keep up either.


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2oldman

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Posted: 09/12/17 12:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Predictions are difficult, but imagine if they under-estimated the impact.

WTP-GC

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Posted: 09/12/17 01:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2oldman wrote:

Predictions are difficult, but imagine if they under-estimated the impact.

No doubt!!! Agree with you completely.
I've spent most of this day re-arranging schedules, communicating with clients, and changing plans. That's just me, a small fish in a huge sea of other people doing the same. I began to think about the scale of impact this has the economy and governmental service sectors. Without including the cost of addressing damage, think of all the people who evacuated early last week and in some cases won't be returning until later this week. From my perspective, I'm looking at roughly 2 weeks of lost/reduced productivity due to storm prep and not being able to return back fully. People left their jobs, communities, volunteer services, etc. all just to flee a storm that didn't need to be fled (in some cases). But again, how do you know what's the best course of action? Better safe than sorry for sure. But I'm willing to bet that most people who evacuated fall into one the following categories: unemployed, not permanently employed, retired, semi-retired, disabled, had lots of PTO stockpiled. (Of course, that's not including people who were in the Keys and knew they'd be underwater if they stayed) In the areas that expected to be hit harder, I know that some companies sent their employees home and just shutdown.

Retired JSO

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Posted: 09/12/17 03:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Many gas stations in Jacksonville are out of gas today. Just made a loop around I-295 and where we got on in the southside and where we got off in the westside, Gate Stations were out.





Veebyes

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Posted: 09/12/17 03:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The drama, the misinformation & the lack of information from various weather people was shameful. All the information is right there on the National Hurricane Centers website. The graphics are not glitzy. There is plenty that needs to be read but it is all there for anyone who takes the time to read it & think for themselves.

Florida dodged the bullet & got off light. Spare a thought for Martinique, Barbuda & the Turks & Caicos islands. They were thoroughly trashed.


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John&Joey

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Posted: 09/12/17 03:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

WTP-GC wrote:

2oldman wrote:

Predictions are difficult, but imagine if they under-estimated the impact.

No doubt!!! Agree with you completely..


X3, BUT....

The Weather Channel is in it to make money. Do they really have to report in rain jackets with the hoods up when in the background a Mother is pushing a baby in a stroller? Or stand in a flooded rooftop parking ramp? Or show palm trees bending? Or non native trees snapped in two?

Lot's of people lives and their budgets are at stake. The news and Weather Channel should be held to a higher standard then their self imposed one.

NYCgrrl

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Posted: 09/12/17 05:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm happy for most of FL's luck in bypassing the worst case scenarios of Irma, Jose, and Katia, saddened by visuals of the damage of the Keys in general, and spending a fair bit of my time canvassing for donations for various Caribbean islands who by their location lessened the blow for mainlanders.

I think lives were saved by coverage and if drama is required to bolster commonsense and humility, so be it.

Crowe

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Posted: 09/12/17 06:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Florida dodged the bullet & got off light.

I beg to differ and find this comment a bit offensive. While it wasn't as bad as it could have been I wouldn't call the damage in the Keys "light", nor all the people that will lose everything due to flooding. And that includes people in GA and SC. I don't think anyone has forgotten the Caribbean but charity begins at home. The president of Mexico had pledged aid for Texas after Harvey and had to renege after Katia and the earthquake occurred as he has to put his own country first-I don't begrudge him that. As far as people just going to the National Hurricane website-not everyone can interpret data.

I think lives were saved by coverage and if drama is required to bolster commonsense and humility, so be it.

X2. The only downside is if they over-dramatize it's possible people will ignore the warnings the next time around. The weather people did the best they could with the information they had. What some people fail to realize is that hurricanes are like two-year-olds-fickle, cranky and very unpredictable. For anyone to criticize forecasters for not being 100% accurate is arrogance at it's best. We should all the thankful it didn't turn out as bad as it could have been but also bear in mind many, many people have lost all they had. We have a nephew that lives in Bradenton that had the common sense to bail last week and arrive in MA on Thursday. He'd rather scrap vacation time to ensure his family's safety then risk it. What he's going back to, no one knows. Even if damage is "light" by comparison it won't reduce the loss if he goes home and finds his home destroyed.


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lizzie

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Posted: 09/12/17 07:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We evacuated because we live in a mandatory evacuation zone and if we had flooded it would be hard for rescue personnel to get us out. Since we are well able to get ourselves out of harms way...we did so. In situations like this, it isn't all about you. Our staying would have been worrisome to our family and could have stressed community resources for no reason. We follow Mike's Weather Page, an excellent no-nonsense source with easy to understand information and no hysteria. lizzie

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