Wellington, FL
(Registered User)
Fri Oct 28 2005 02:25 PM
Re: South Florida

I've read this site for over a year, but this is my first post since moving to Palm Beach County, FL in July of '04. Frances and Jeanne were eye-openers and I've watched the tropics ever since.

We live in Wellington, which is about 15 miles west of West Palm Beach. As another poster has mentioned, Wilma's back side was worse than her front side. Our neighborhood is new, but we still had trees down, tiles off and screened patios torn down. Many of the neighbors came outside during the eye (the dogs needed walked) which probably lasted an hour and a half. It was breezy, but beautiful. But when we came back inside, the wind really howled. My personal remembrance of Wilma will be her disruption to the power system. With no power, there's no pumping of gas. With no gas, generators don't run and relief supplies don't get delivered. Fresh water and waste water systems become compromised. Many south Florida neighborhoods have been under a boil water order for several days now. Some communities couldn't flush, etc.

Our power was off almost four full days and just came back on around 3AM, but that is much better than the two weeks that was being forecast. I can't tell you how glad I am that we were well-prepared. Tons of frozen water in the freezer helped me to keep most perishables cold and we really didn't even get too far into the canned food. We are lucky that we have a gas stove and water heater., but I have a camping stove and propane anyway. I didn't have any reason to leave the house in search of ice and water. I did begin to worry about sewer backups when they started talking about the waste water generators not having enough fuel. That would have been nasty!

We are trying to conserve the fuel in our two vehicles until the gas lines become a bit more tolerable. I think this weekend will be much improved.

An elderly woman from a mobile home village in Boynton Beach spent two nights with us. Her home had only cosmetic damage to a shed and porch, but her neighborhood was littered with aluminum and landscaping debris. They still do not have power, but she wanted to be at home so we got her a portable radio, checked her food supply and took her back.

I've been very happy with the flow of information via the radio concerning power, water safety, gas stations, etc. There's always room for improvement, but I think Florida tries very hard to be prepared, as well as inform and protect their citizens.

I'm glad to be able to read this site again. I've been going through withdrawal hearing little snippets about Alpha and Beta and not knowing "The Truth" as seen through the eyes of flhurricane.com!


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