Florida's Death Toll Climbs After Hurricane

About four dozen were killed, and the count is growing
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 2, 2022 6:40 AM CDT
Florida's Death Toll Climbs After Hurricane
The bridge leading from Fort Myers to Pine Island, Fla., is heavily damaged in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian. The island can currently be reached only by boat or air.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Florida's death toll has climbed sharply in the wake of Hurricane Ian, with hundreds of thousands of people were still sweltering without power days after the monster storm rampaged from the state's southwestern coast up to the Carolinas.

  • At least 54 people were confirmed dead: 47 in Florida, four in North Carolina, and three in Cuba, per the AP.
  • Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Saturday that multibillionaire businessman Elon Musk was providing some 120 Starlink satellites to “help bridge some of the communication issues.” Starlink, a satellite-based internet system created by Musk's SpaceX, will provide high-speed connectivity.
  • Florida utilities were working to restore power. As of Saturday night, nearly 1 million homes and businesses were still without electricity, down from a peak of 2.67 million.

  • More than 1,000 people were rescued from flooded areas along Florida's southwestern coast alone, said Daniel Hokanson, a four-star general and head of the National Guard.
  • In Washington, the White House announced that President Biden and first lady Jill Biden would travel to Florida on Wednesday. But a brief statement did not release any details of the planned visit to the state.
  • In North Carolina, the storm downed trees and power lines. Two of the four deaths in the state were from storm-related vehicle crashes, and the others involved a man who drowned when his truck plunged into a swamp and another killed by carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator in a garage.
  • South Carolina's Pawleys Island, a beach community roughly 75 miles up the coast from Charleston, was also hit hard. Power remained knocked out to at least half the island Saturday.
(Read more Hurricane Ian stories.)

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