MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Hours after Hurricane Hermine hit parts of Florida, Governor Rick Scott warned residents to stay safe from debris and help avoid the spread of the Zika virus.
“There’s going to be a lot of debris. Do not travel on the roads until they are clear and safe to do so,” said Scott. “We’ve got a lot of trees down. We’ve got a lot of power lines down.”
Scott warned the public to avoid standing water, especially near downed power lines.
“Don’t travel unless you really have to travel,” Scott reiterated.
Amid aftermath worries, Scott also asked the public to keep Zika on their minds considering the amount of standing water left after the hurricane – a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.
“It is incredibly important that everyone do their part to combat the Zika virus by dumping standing water,” said Scott. “Remember to wear long sleeves and bug repellent when outdoors.”
So far, Scott said about 253,000 Floridians experienced power loss during and after the hurricane hit early Friday.
As of 10 a.m. Friday, more than 70,000 homes remained without power. It’s something Scott said will hopefully be resolved soon.
“Our utility companies are working to restore power,” said Scott.
As for those in the affected communities, Scott said special forces are conducting search and rescue missions – especially along the hardest hit areas in the Gulf coast.
Various roads in the areas hit remain closed. Those wishing to check which roads are open can click here.
Scott said schools and state parks in the affected areas remained closed Friday.
As for what’s next, Scott said, “We will spend the coming days assessing the damage and responding to the needs of our Florida families.”
For those needing housing, about 59 shelters in the affected area will continue to offer housing to residents.
At last check, Scott said there were no confirmed reports of tornado activity.
After making landfall in Florida as a Category 1 hurricane, Hermine weakened to a tropical storm as it moved towards southern Georgia.
Click here for more information on Hermine aftermath help or call 850-921-0217.
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