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'Sheds and porta potties': Debris clean-up in Charlotte County waterways continues after Ian

Charlotte County water
Posted at 10:17 AM, Feb 26, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-26 10:17:32-05

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. — It's been nearly five months since Hurricane Ian hit southwest Florida, and crews in Charlotte County continue to clean up the waterways. For the next two weeks, workers will launch from a Port Charlotte boat ramp, moving forward with debris pick-up.

They'll be unloading debris at the South Gulf Cove Park boat ramp until March 11. It's a sight Joann Belviso is happy to see after being off the water for some time.

"We didn’t put our boat back in the water for a couple of months," she said.

They live nearby and say this area has 55 miles of waterway, which feeds into the Myakka River. Recently, Belviso saw the Broward County Sheriff's Office with a sonar, looking at the debris in the water.

"The barges came through the last couple of days by our house and they’re bringing up a lot of stuff," Belviso said. "Trees, limbs, a lot of debris from sheds and porta potties and the like."

Charlotte County is done with debris clean-up on land and had started on the waterways November 1. However, the county website say the Florida Department of Emergency Management has taken over the water clean-up, though it's not clear why.

The boat ramp could see some delays and slow boat traffic while unloading the debris.

"We’re very hopeful that things will get kinda back to normal," Belviso said.