— PANAMA CITY, #Florida
— It was two days after #Hurricane
Michael, and Eddie Foster was pushing his mother in a wheelchair down a smashed street, his face creased with a concentrated dose of the frustration and fear that has afflicted much of the Florida Panhandle since the storm turned its coast to rubble.
He was in a working-class neighborhood called Millville, where many residents said they were becoming desperate for even basic necessities. Foster, 60, and his 99-year-old mother had no car, no electricity. The food had spoiled in his refrigerator. The storm had ripped off large sections of his roof. He had no working plumbing. No water to drink. And as of Friday afternoon, he had seen no sign of government help.
“What can I do?” he said. “I’m not angry. I just want some help.”
This was the problem government officials were racing to solve Friday, as desperation grew. Long lines formed for gas and food, and across the battered coastline, those who were poor, trapped and isolated sent out pleas for help.
It would take time to reach everyone. Yet the Panama City area, one of those hit hardest by Hurricane Michael, grew into a whirring hive of activity on Friday, as box trucks, military personnel and rescue and aid workers flowed in from surrounding counties and states, struggling to fix communications and electrical systems that officials said were almost demolished.
The death toll from the Category 4 storm that hit Wednesday rose to at least 16, stretching as far north as Virginia, where five people died, and it was expected to climb higher as search-and-rescue crews fanned out through rubble that in some cases spanned entire blocks.
Shellshocked residents continued to stream from their homes, mostly focused on the first steps of rebuilding — finding help, from government assistance to shelters. -
But for some, the search proved frustrating: Solid answers were scarce, particularly in remote parts of the Panhandle.
Tracey Simmons, 42, was angrier. “They’re doing us like they did New Orleans,” she said.
#racism #sameshit #accountability #educate #bias #bigotry #diversity #dumptrump #fucktrump #equality