A long history of damage to Florida's 360-mile-long Florida Reef Tract has weakened it as a barrier to storms.
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(AL AR FL GA KY LA MS NC PR SC TN)
"Utilities in the U.S. Southeast returned power to almost half of the homes and businesses knocked out by Hurricane Irma, leaving about 4.3 million customers in the dark as of midday Wednesday, in one of the biggest restoration efforts in U.S. history."
"As Hurricane Irma rampaged through Florida, snapping power lines and damaging vital equipment, it left as many as 15 million people in the state without electricity, the Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday. While some homes may see power restored within days, utilities said that other customers may have to wait weeks."
"The death toll from Hurricane Irma has climbed to 22 in the United States following its path of destruction across the Caribbean and through the Southeast U.S. over the weekend, while power has now been restored to over 2 million customers in Florida."
Check out our guide to reporting on hurricanes like Irma, Harvey and Maria, and their aftermath. We've compiled a series of resources, including a hurricane Toolbox and Backgrounders (including one on the power grid, post-outages), as well as TipSheets on hurricanes, flooding, flood insurance, storm surge, toxic floodwaters, dam failures and more. Plus, get the latest hurricane headlines from EJ Today (subscribe).
"A weakened Irma brought rain and wind to a wide section of the country on Tuesday after causing at least 11 deaths and leaving some 6.7 million people without power in five states."
"Hurricane Irma dropped to a Category 1 storm early Monday after it tore through southwest Florida and left more than 4 million customers without power."
"Two Florida nuclear power plants in the path of Hurricane Irma are shutting down to brace for the Category 5 storm's devastating wind and rain."
"Officials in Florida’s Palm Beach County announced a mandatory evacuation for communities south of Lake Okeechobee in an 'overabundance of caution' ahead of Hurricane Irma."
"In America, the world’s richest country, hookworm, a parasitic disease found in areas of extreme poverty, is rampant, the first study of its kind in modern times shows."