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Riding out Hurricane Irma in Key West, Florida

Riding out Hurricane Irma in Key West, Florida”

Carruthers said it will be a while before the Florida Keys return to normalcy and the district's announcement that schools will re-open on September 25 will help that happen.

"When the power goes out generators can be a lifesaver, but used without good ventilation generators can be deadly", Cooper said in the release.

Officials warn living conditions will be primitive for at least the next few weeks or more. Ramsay said he will "saturate" areas like Big Pine, Cudjoe, Little Torch and Ramrod Keys to prevent looting.

In a statement, AIR said: “Most of Florida was in peril due to the massive size of the storm, as hurricane-force winds extended 80 miles from the eye, and tropical storm — force winds extended more than 400 miles, covering the entire state and driving storm surge into both the Atlantic and Gulf coasts.”.

"You just described it", said Monroe County Commissioner David Rice. Yet some understand the need to stay away and allow recovery crews to clean-up and re-establish power, water and cell phone service.

The cities of Marathon and Key West already planned on allowing their residents to return. On one hand, we need lots of people to get this place cleaned up and running again. on the other hand, I can't imagine what it's going to be like with thousands of more people taxing what resources we have here.

Marathon was also badly hit by the storm.

The county moved evacuees into the fairgrounds after shutting down the other 41 shelters opened ahead of the storm.

About 10 percent of residents in the Lower Keys chose to ride the storm in their homes.

Monroe County is now open to Marathon at Mile Marker 47, just north of the 7 Mile Bridge.

"Kristin and I are saddened by this news and send our deepest sympathies to the victim's family and friends", Gov. Roy Cooper said in a news release.

Mariners Hospital in Tavernier is open. Key West's Lower Keys Medical Center's emergency room is fully functioning and the hospital may be able to accept in-patients some time next week.

Hurricane Irma made landfall in Cudjoe Key at 9:10 a.m., September 10.



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