- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 10, 2017

President Trump said Sunday he plans to visit Florida “very soon” to personally survey the damage from Hurricane Irma and the federal response.

“The bad news is this is some big monster, but I think we’re very well put,” Mr. Trump told reports as he arrived at the White House after a weekend at Camp David in nearby western Maryland.

He said he was heading into a meeting to counting coordinating the response to Irma, which made a second landfall in Florida. It was downgraded to a Category 3 hurricane but still packed 120 mph winds, heavy rain and potentially massive storm surge that could reach 10 feet.

The president, who had a teleconference briefing earlier on the day about the preparations for the 400-mile wide storm, commended everyone involved in the effort, from the governors across the South to FEMA and the Coast Guard.

“I think it’s been going really well. It’s a rough hurricane,” he said. “The Coast Guard has been amazing already. You’ve been hearing what they’re doing right in the middle of the storm. FEMA has been incredible. We’re working very well with the governor and the other governors in the surrounding states.”

Mr. Trump twice visited Texas and Louisiana after Hurricane Harvey ripped through the region and caused devastating flooding in Houston. The recovery effort is just begging on those Gulf Coast states when Irma beared down on Florida.

The president said he hoped Florida residents had heeded local evacuation orders.

“You don’t want to be in that path. That’s a path you don’t want to be in,” said Mr. Trump. “We tried to warn everybody. For the most part, they’ve left, but that’s a bad path to be in.”

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