FPL Irma outages dwindle as lawsuit looms

Miami Fire Rescue Crews to Puerto Rico Before Maria

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The majority of utility customers who lost power in Hurricane Irma's battering winds have had service restored, but in some hard-hit areas as well as a few isolated pockets, the work continues. Twelve years later, the larger Irma knocked out 4.4 of FPL's now-4.9 million customers - about 90 percent.

Hurricane Irma has caused a total of 82 deaths leaving 1.5 million homes and businesses in Florida without power in scorching heat, five days after the storm ravaged the South-east of the United States.

Matt Sawhill, incoming Statesboro area manager for Georgia Power, emailed that he was "very happy to report that as of 3 p.m., all Georgia Power customers in Bulloch County that can receive power are getting power".

As of Tuesday afternoon, 14,130 customers in Miami-Dade and 2,890 customers in Broward were without power.

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The biggest challenge was clearing debris after huge trees toppled onto power lines, creating a challenging situation for crews going neighborhood to neighborhood.

FPL, which serves almost five million homes and businesses, said it expects to restore power to essentially all its users, in the eastern portion of Florida, by the end of the weekend and the harder-hit western portion of the state by September 22. On Sunday, FPL said it would be Monday and on Monday she was told it would be Tuesday.

FPL plans to have power to all customers by Wednesday unless there is an unusual circumstance that is preventing them. The company now expects that it will restore service to 95 percent of affected customers by Saturday evening, a day sooner than its earlier projections.

About 300,000 customers remain without power, according to a September 17 statement. It also brought flooding, especially in coastal areas.

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FPL has said power will be restored to the west coast of Florida by the end of Friday.

The state estimates that there are 2,501 to 5,000 claims each from Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties, with more specific numbers unavailable.

FPL estimated between 1,200 and 1,500 poles came down because of Irma. "Residents have been coming to the Recreation Center all week", he said.

In the wake of a storm, power companies avoid saying that service has been restored to every customer location. "Shutting off power is a last resort, and we would not cut off power to someone because they haven't been able to pay their bill for good reason".

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