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Neighbors in Fort Myers Beach brace for high tide and heavy wind

Posted at 10:03 PM, Jan 09, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-09 22:29:09-05

FORT MYERS BEACH. FLA. — Storm clouds gathered over Fort Myers Beach and lightning began to strike around 7PM. With strong winds blowing throughout the day, the neighbors and local businesses took necessary precautions to reduce potential damage.

The Fort Myers Beach town hall provided sandbags to help fortify homes and businesses. Town workers cleared storm drains earlier in the day, ensuring that water could flow freely and reduce the risk of flooding.

In Times Square, many businesses decided to close early in preparation for the storm.

Salty Waters, a local musician who preforms on Fort Myers Beach, remarked on the situation, "It looks like all the bars are closing down tonight because there's a storm, so theoretically we could get water back here again just like it was a short while ago."

A particular concern for people is the neighborhood around Sterling Avenue off Estero Boulevard, which has been experiencing ongoing flooding issues. Even a king tide is enough to flood the streets here, leaving residents worried and frustrated.

Carole Newsam, a resident of Fort Myers Beach, shared her struggles of her routine with the frequent flooding.

"Pick up everything off the floor, I have a washer and dryer we have to pick up, I have a freezer I have to pick up. We just lost all my brand new appliances in the kitchen. So yeah, it's a pain preparing for it," she explained.

The loss of appliances during a flood back in December has made her even more cautious, prompting her to take extra steps to protect her belongings and even moving her car to higher ground.

As the town faces strong wind gusts and a peak high tide on Tuesday night, town leaders are urging residents to avoid driving through flooded streets.