MIAMI (AP) - Hurricane Irma is history but its aftermath remains deadly. Emergency crews around Florida are moving elderly residents from nursing homes without power, after eight people died in one sweltering facility. President Donald Trump is visiting survivors in Fort Myers and Naples, where many remain swamped and without electricity. Here’s more about what’s happening:
- 2.69 million homes and businesses, about 1 in 4 Florida customers, including 81 nursing homes, were without power.
- 94 degrees (34 Celsius) is what the heat and humidity feel like in South Florida.
- $300 million is the total money donated to the Red Cross for hurricanes Harvey and Irma
- $500,000 is the annual salary of Red Cross President Gail McGovern.
THE DEATH TOLL
The confirmed death toll from Hurricane Irma stood at 69, including at least 38 people killed across the Caribbean and 31 in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. The rampage is over, but the aftermath significantly increases the risk of death and injury.
President Donald Trump said his administration has “been very, very fast and we had to be,” in response to Hurricane Irma. Trump spoke at an aircraft hangar before touring Fort Myers and Naples. People are tired, sweaty and frustrated in southwest Florida . Two-thirds of Lee County’s customers and almost 80 percent of Collier County remains without power, and entire communities remain inundated.
Retirees have always loved the Florida sunshine, as long as they had air-conditioning at home and convenient services nearby. After Irma, many elderly living on their own remain without power and isolated. Even with help, they’re at risk : 81 of the state’s 3,100 assisted living facilities lacked electricity, and firefighters were helping to evacuate people in suffocating heat and humidity after eight residents of one nursing home died.
Millions of Floridians were living in poverty before Irma. Now they’re running out of options , with their homes and workplaces destroyed, and survival costs soaring.
The American Red Cross is among charities leading the disaster response in Florida, and is recommended by the watchdog group Charity Navigator. But it’s under intense scrutiny amid calls for more accountability.
Filing claims for major damage can be a full-time job because you must document every loss and negotiate a fair settlement with insurance companies. In Irma’s aftermath, some may hire their own adjusters to advocate for them.
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