Where did Hurricane Jeanne make landfall?
The Category 3 storm struck the southern tip of Hutchinson Island near Stuart, about 35 miles north of West Palm Beach. It hit in almost the exact spot where Hurricane Frances barreled ashore three weeks ago.
Why did Hurricane Jeanne's track change after it made landfall?
Tampa Bay residents went to bed Saturday night reassured by a forecast that showed Jeanne passing through Vero Beach, Kissimmee and Citrus County, 30 to 50 miles north of its eventual path. That forecast was based on the behavior of a high-pressure system hovering in the Atlantic Ocean, just off North Carolina. As the high moved farther out to sea, Jeanne was expected to move west underneath it, then curve northwest, then north, and finally northeast around the high's western edge. During the night, however, the system moved more slowly than expected, which delayed Jeanne's northwesterly curve. Instead, the hurricane kept heading west _ right toward the northern edge of Hillsborough County.
Should the Tampa Bay area expect a Hurricane Frances-like backlash of high winds and storm surge after the storm leaves the area?
Forecasters are calling for 1 to 3 inches of rain today for the Tampa Bay area, including the Nature Coast. Storm surge is not expected to exceed more than 1 foot above normal tides today. High winds are not expected.
When was the last time four hurricanes hit one state in a single season?
Four hurricanes in one season represents an ordeal no state has faced since 1886, when Texas was the target.
Just how large is the emergency response in Florida?
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has responded with the largest deployment in its history, eclipsing the responses for the 1994 earthquake in Northridge, Calif., and the 2001 terrorist attacks, according to FEMA director Michael Brown. The hurricanes and their remnants have forced the agency to deploy thousands of workers from Louisiana to Vermont.
When was the last time a hurricane, rather than a tropical storm, passed through part of the Tampa Bay area?
Hurricane Gladys, a Category 1 storm, moved in north of Tampa Bay in 1968 with 80-mph winds. Jeanne still may have been a minimal hurricane when it passed over the northeast corner of Hillsborough County on Sunday, but that wasn't known with certainty Sunday evening.
When is hurricane season?
The Atlantic hurricane season runs June 1 through Nov. 30; the peak is mid August through mid October.
What should I do if I have damage?
Call your insurance agent. Take photos of damage. Make any emergency repairs to prevent more damage and keep receipts to help document your claim.
Whom can I call for further disaster assistance?
Call your insurance agent. If you need more help or don't have insurance, call the Federal Emergency Management Agency toll-free at 1-800-621-3362 or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing- or speech-impaired, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week.
Will some people have to pay a triple hurricane deductible?
Yes, it's certainly possible, said Tom Hagerty of State Farm. The paths of Hurricanes Charley, Frances and Ivan intersected in Polk County, leaving property owners affected by all three. Currently, most policyholders have to pay a hurricane deductible of 2 percent to 5 percent of the damage caused by a storm. Insurers view damage from each storm as a separate event; therefore, a separate deductible would apply. But there are some caveats. Insurers typically won't charge another deductible if a homeowner has unrepaired damage from one storm (such as a ripped-off roof) which leads to further damage from another storm. Then again, if one storm damages the roof of the house and a second storm damages an attached garage, look for separate deductibles.
How do I dry out my house if there's flooding?
As soon as it's safe to turn the electricity on, crank up the air conditioning. Don't open the windows. That just allows more moist air in, which will increase the growth of mold. The A/C acts as a dehumidifier. Remove soaked carpets and pads. Insurers will regard them as unsalvageable. Remove baseboards to inhibit mold. If you have wood or tile floors, use a wet vacuum. Use fans to circulate air and promote drying. Prop up wet furniture cushions for even drying. Open drawers and doors to enhance drying.
What do I do if a tree falls on my house?
If damage to your house is due to wind from a hurricane, you likely would have to pay a hurricane deductible out-of-pocket first before your insurance company starts paying. If you have minimal damage mostly covered by your deductible, you should weigh the possibility that filing a claim could lead to policy cancellation or a higher rate. It might be more economical in the long run to pay the repair cost yourself. For major damage, contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Most insurers will not penalize homeowners who make temporary fixes themselves in order to make a home habitable or safe. In any case, keep receipts.
What do I do if someone is overcharging me for emergency services?
The state attorney general's price gouging hotline remains active for victims of previous hurricanes and will respond, as well, to people victimized in the aftermath of Hurricane Jeanne. The toll-free number is 1-800-646-0444.
What is the status at local airports?
Tampa International Airport will open at 5:30 a.m today; St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport will open at 6 a.m.