Sunday, October 6, 2019

“Hurricane Dorian: Martin County lifts evacuation order - News - Palm Beach Post” plus 1 more

“Hurricane Dorian: Martin County lifts evacuation order - News - Palm Beach Post” plus 1 more


Hurricane Dorian: Martin County lifts evacuation order - News - Palm Beach Post

Posted: 04 Sep 2019 12:00 AM PDT

Schools and government offices will reopen Thursday, authorities said.

STUART - Mandatory evacuation orders were lifted for Martin County on Tuesday as services around the county gradually began to return to normal following Hurricane Dorian.

As Dorian slowly started a northward trek along the Florida coast as a Category 2 hurricane, forecast models showed the center of the storm remaining offshore.

"We feel very fortunate," Martin County Sheriff William Snyder said as he announced the lifting of the evacuation during a news conference Tuesday at the county's Emergency Operations Center.

The county had issued the evacuation order Sunday for residents of Hutchinson Island, Jupiter Island and Sewall's Point, as well as for residents in mobile homes and in low-lying areas. Shelters were also opened Sunday.

Martin County officials planned to keep the shelters open, but many of those staying in the shelters had left by Tuesday evening with the exception of those staying the special needs shelter, a county spokeswoman said.

With Dorian's outer bands still expected to bring sporadic rain and wind gusts throughout the day, Snyder urged residents to remain indoors, if possible.

"Really, with just a sloppy weather day, if you don't have to get out, probably this would be a good day to stay home and not get on the road," he said.

As deputies began surveying roadways, they found flooding in some areas. But there were no roadblocks and there were no reports of significant damage, sheriff's Capt. John Perez said.

The Jensen Beach and Stuart Causeways are open.

The county experienced minor power outages Tuesday. According to the Florida Power & Light outage tracker, there were 544 customers in Martin County without power as of 3 p.m.

Water service has been restored to Hutchinson Island, county officials said. The service was shut off prior to the arrival of Dorian to protect the water system from damage. A boil-water notice is in effect for Hutchinson Island until further notice.

Martin County schools and government offices will reopen Thursday, county officials announced.

While the county was spared a direct hit, officials cautioned that residents should not become complacent in the event that another storm threatens the area.

"If you boarded up, you did the right thing," Snyder said. "If you left your home because you're in a mandatory evacuation zone, you did the right thing."

In St. Lucie County, authorities planned to lift mandatory evacuations of the barrier islands, low-lying coastal areas and mobile homes by 5 p.m. Wednesday. However, residents and business owners would be allowed to return when they choose, a county spokesman said.

Residents in shelters were beginning to leave Tuesday afternoon, but the shelters will remain open until 6 a.m. Wednesday.

County public schools and government offices will resume normal operations on Thursday.

jwhigham@pbpost.com

@JuliusWhigham

Hurricane Dorian: Delray Beach businesses open despite stormy weather - Palm Beach Post

Posted: 03 Sep 2019 12:00 AM PDT

Downtown Delray Beach businesses open despite Hurricane Dorian off the coast.

DELRAY BEACH — Sporadic rain and gusts from the slow-moving cyclone off Florida's coast didn't keep Delray Beach businesses from opening their doors Tuesday afternoon.

Several restaurants on Atlantic Avenue — including Rocco's Tacos, Farmhouse Kitchen, Elisabetta's Ristorante and The Office — were open Tuesday.

The downtown thoroughfare was humming with activity despite a countywide tropical storm warning and a mandatory evacuation in effect less than a mile away in vulnerable coastal neighborhoods.

"It's just another hurricane that almost hit us but didn't," said Isaiah Clark, who bought a slice of pizza from Sazio Express' to-go window.

Tropical storm-force winds and rain are expected in the area through Tuesday night, the National Hurricane Center reports.

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A surfer argues with a city police officer after he was told that the beach was closed because of dangerous conditions from Hurricane Dorian in Delray Beach, Florida on September 2, 2019. See more photos at link in bio! [GREG LOVETT/palmbeachpost.com] #dorian #hurricanedorian #delraybeach #surfer #surfingphotography #palmbeachesfl

A post shared by The Palm Beach Post (@pbpost) on Sep 2, 2019 at 1:40pm PDT

Though many trekked to downtown Delray, some still worried about Hurricane Dorian's potential.

"We're not in the clear yet," said Aishe Robinson, who ate at the Checkers on West Atlantic Avenue with her son, Jamal Jackson.

"Storms are unpredictable," Robinson said. "We can't take that for granted."

Jackson chimed in to say the storm was "over-hyped," a sentiment many shared when the latest forecast downgraded Dorian to a Category 2, far weaker than the Category 5 storm once predicted to batter Florida's coast.

"It's just like Irma," Jackson said of the hurricane that sideswiped Palm Beach County two years ago and did minimal damage. Forecasts also placed Florida in the path of the powerful Hurricane Irma until it made a sharp northwest turn.

Though some businesses opened Tuesday, many chains, including Publix Supermarkets and Starbucks, remained closed.

City police blocked access to the barrier island for safety. Only those who live east of the Intracoastal Waterway could pass the police blockade.

lramadan@pbpost.com

@luluramadan

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