Hurricane Dorian: Gov. DeSantis' Different Approach To Hurricane Response - WUSF Public Media | Tampa NPR, Local News Coverage

Hurricane Dorian: Gov. DeSantis’ Different Approach To Hurricane Response

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody says she will hold price-gouging businesses accountable after Hurricane Dorian. ASHLEY MOODY/TWITTER

Here are the latest developments on Hurricane Dorian:

Ashley Moody: Offending Businesses Will Be Held Accountable

The Florida Attorney General’s Office is investigating instances of price gouging across the state as Hurricane Dorian continues to hug the east coast.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the consumer protection division announced it’s looking into more than 24-hundred reports of price gouging.

Attorney General Ashley Moody posted a video on her twitter account earlier this week.

“For the most part, businesses across the state are helping Floridians, helping make sure they have the supplies they need. But when there are bad actors, we’re responding and we’ll hold businesses accountable. They need to know that.”

Gas stations in Miami, West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale are being investigated for selling gas for more than the listed price.

The Attorney General is also investigating reports that a Shell station in Broward County is selling cases of water for more than twice the list price.


Dire Red Cross Estimates Of Damage In Bahamas

Red Cross spokesman Matthew Cochrane said more than 13,000 houses, or about 45% of the homes on Grand Bahama and Abaco, were believed to be severely damaged or destroyed. U.N. officials said more than 60,000 people on the hard-hit islands will need food, and the Red Cross said some 62,000 will need clean drinking water.

“What we are hearing lends credence to the fact that this has been a catastrophic storm and a catastrophic impact,” Cochrane said.

The Red Cross authorized $500,000 for the first wave of disaster relief, Cochrane said. U.N. humanitarian teams stood ready to go into the stricken areas to help assess damage and the country’s needs, U.N. spokesman Stéphane Dujarric said. The U.S. government also sent a disaster response team.

— Associated Press

Jacksonville Mayor: If You Haven’t Evacuated, Shelter In Place

As Jacksonville preparee for the effects of Hurricane Dorian starting Tuesday night into Wednesday, Mayor Lenny Curry said residents who planned to evacuate should already be gone. And if you’re not, shelter in place.

“All storm preparations should be complete at this point. Stay off of the beach. Don’t drive around if you don’t have to,” Curry said. “This is not the time for sightseeing. There will be numerous roadway hazards and flooding and we want everyone to stay safe.”

He said as of Tuesday afternoon more than 500 evacuees were utilizing the city’s 12 shelter locations.


DeSantis’ Different Approach To Hurricane Response

Local emergency departments across the state responding to Hurricane Dorian are seeing big changes under Gov. Ron DeSantis.

The relationship was different under former Gov. Rick Scott, who often took the lead in directing county emergency officials.

DeSantis says he and the director of the state Division of Emergency Management, Jared Moskowitz, have made it a point to work from the bottom up when it comes to issues like evacuations.

“I’d much rather work with them, come to a solution that may be 90 percent of what Jared and I think is ideal but then all be unified in that so we have a coherent message than to kind of be at loggerheads with folks,” DeSantis said.

DeSantis adds he thinks local emergency leaders, particularly in coastal counties, have the experience to handle storm response.

A number of those leaders also say that DeSantis’ approach is more in line with what’s happened historically.


Orlando Airport Reopens

Florida’s busiest airport is re-opening after being closed for more than a day because Hurricane Dorian was skirting the state’s eastern coast.

Officials say Orlando International Airport was resuming commercial operations at noon Wednesday. Flights into and out of the airport were halted Tuesday morning in anticipation of the storm.

Meanwhile, Orlando’s theme parks were back to regular operating hours, for the most part.

Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort opened for a full day on Wednesday after having closed early Tuesday. SeaWorld Orlando was re-opening mid-morning Wednesday after being closed all day Tuesday.

— Associated Press

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