IRMA: Flooding, power outages continue to plague Central Florida

By Christina Jensen, Reporter
Last Updated: Wednesday, September 13, 2017, 10:45 AM EDT

While many are still without power, flooding is a major concern across Central Florida and especially for one part of Kissimmee.

  • Osceola County development suffering from rising waters
  • Power companies work quickly to restore power
  • National Guard is funneling in resources, supplies
  • RELATED: IRMA: Florida power outage numbers, maps

Residents were asked to leave the Good Samaritan Society Village on Village Drive on Tuesday after water levels continued to rise.

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office is extremely concerned about the water levels at the community. On Tuesday, deputies evacuated more than 300 people through those gates.

Currently, deputies and security are stationed at the development and are not allowing anyone to get through the entrance.

Using airboats and four wheelers, emergency responders evacuated people from the neighborhood of about 800 people.

Several cars are submerged in water and the water level is covering half of a stop sign and almost reaching mailboxes.

The sheriff’s office says this is why people need to get out now. They are not forcing anyone to leave, but strongly recommending it.

The county says water levels will continue to rise because of overflow from Shingle Creek.

Officials are advising anyone who lives along the creek to get out of their homes because of the possibility of even more flooding.

Residents who evacuated the community were taken to two shelters.

And more than half the state of Florida is still without power, according to state emergency management officials.

Florida Power and Light stated that due to investments made over the last decade, the process to restore power is moving quickly.

"Overall, we've been able to restore power to over 40 percent of the customers impacted by Hurricane Irma in just one day. To put that in to perspective, after Hurricane Wilma over a decade ago, we had restored only 4 percent of the customers in the same time," said Bryan Garner of FPL.

FPL hopes to restore power for most east coast customers by the end of the weekend.

Meantime, Duke Energy says power should be back on by midnight Sunday and OUC estimates that power will be restored by 10 p.m., Friday.

Meanwhile, the National Guard is helping funnel needed resources across the state after Hurricane Irma.

They are sending in food, water, fuel, and even generators to the hardest hit areas.

The U.S. Coast Guard annoucned that at 4 p.m., Wednesday, it will reopen Port Canaveral and other terminals and facilities with restrictions. 

"However, the conditions of the waterways and port infrastructure are still unknown, and full assessments of the affected areas are still being conducted. The Coast Guard will enforce a temporary safety zone for these post-storm recovery operations," it stated.

Unless authorized by the Coast Guard, all vessels are prohibited from transiting in a regulated area until a complete inspection of the port infrastructure and waterway has been made. Once an assessment is made to an area, the Coast Guard may open specific portions of an area.

"Due to potential effects from Hurricane Irma throughout Port Canaveral, mariners are urged to transit with caution considering the possibility of aids to navigation discrepancies or other hazards to navigation. If discovered, please report any of these issues to Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville," it suggested. 

Seminole County officials gave an update on recovery efforts on Wednesday morning.