President Trump to tour Mexico Beach damage

Olive Hawkins
October 15, 2018

Hurricane Michael wreaks havoc on the coastal town of Mexico Beach, Florida.

Numerous rescue efforts are now focused on Mexico Beach, where canine teams are combing through mangled structures and piles of rubble looking for survivors. And Hurricane Michael pummeled the region with devastating winds from the sea all the way into Georgia, destroying buildings more than 70 miles from the shoreline.

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.

The Sheriff's Office tweeted pictures of Sheriff Jerry Demings in Gulf County checking on almost 50 OCSO personnel helping people there.

- Florida's disjointed property insurance system that relies nearly exclusively on small and midsize companies will take a multibillion dollar loss from Hurricane Michael, but has sufficient reserves and backups that providers should be able to pay claims without problems, analysts say.

This aerial photo shows debris and destruction in Mexico Beach, Fla., after Hurricane Michael went through the area on Wednesday.

Mexico Beach, Florida, for instance, is said to have suffered the destruction of almost 75 percent of its buildings.

Mexico Beach was almost obliterated by Micahel's storm surge and 155mph winds when the category four hurricane made landfall on Wednesday.

The base was home to some of the nation's most advanced fighter jets but Nelson said he could not comment on how many planes were on the base during the storm or how many were damaged. "You don't want to put a rush on a thorough rescue".

Traffic lights remained out yesterday, with police directing traffic at intersections, and lines at the few gas stations that were open were five to six cars deep.

"You're an idiot!" the man shouted back.

Along with the cleanup and getting power restored to more than 750,000 customers, survivors are left with the emotional impact.

Hundreds of patients were taken Friday to hospitals across Florida and as far away as Mobile, Alabama, in a parade of ambulances and medical helicopters.

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One mother in Callaway, just northeast of Panama City, says she and her children have not a hot meal since the storm hit. Several trees came down on their property, including one that smashed through the roof. "And one of the first things that everybody has said is, 'Are we going to have church?"

"Since the storm, there's been no electricity & no water in Panama City".

Hector Morales, a 57-year-old restaurant cook, never even thought of evacuating.

Was he scared? "Worried, I think, is more like it", Shockey said. "But I made it". "Some were more fortunate than others".

Bill Herrle, who owned a house near the shoreline in Mexico Beach until it was destroyed by the storm, said he wasn't sure it made a difference when the homes there were built. But there is still no clear answer to the number of people presumed missing this soon after the storm's passage.

No details were released on who was stranded and what sort of help was needed.

"I'm the idiot that rode it out here in this place", said Blackwell, 65, sweat dripping from his face.

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

Accounting for those missing has been made more hard by damaged mobile phone coverage in many areas.

The hunt for missing people in the aftermath of Michael is turning into a search for the dead Sunday.

"We're in need of food, water, anything", Chantelle Goolspy, who lives in Panama City public housing that was badly damaged by Michael, pleaded in a phone call with the Red Cross. They've also set up a triage tent to treat residents stepping on nails and cutting themselves on debris.

On Monday, President Donald Trump is visiting some of the devastated cities in Florida and Georgia. Today he approved federal disaster aid relief for four Alabama counties affected by the storm.

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