Florida, Georgia Airports Begin to Reopen After Irma, But Rain Continues

Water damage in Orlando International Airport caused by Hurricane Irma

Flights began to resume from Florida and Georgia airports Tuesday morning as Irma continues to weaken.

 According to the latest update from the National Weather Service, Irma is now a post-tropical cyclone and should continue to weaken and lift to the northwest through Wednesday, bringing moderate to locally heavy rain to the mid-south and southeast, as well as through the Ohio Valley and Middle Atlantic by Wednesday. Flash flooding and isolated thunderstorms remain possible.

Airports are beginning to resume operations as of Tuesday morning. Miami International Airport reports that flights are set to resume on a limited basis, and the rental car schedule will open tomorrow on its normal schedule.

Orlando International Airport is beginning to phase in limited commercial operations starting Tuesday after a damage assessment and cleanup. During the storm water entered the airports Main Terminal, the arrival curbs on both the A & B sides of the Main Terminal suffered torn canopies, and debris and obstructions clogged the airports roadway system.

Fort Lauderdale – Hollywood International Airport reopened for business at 4 a.m. on a limited flight schedule. Tampa International Airport is also resuming flights today, building up to a full schedule over the following days. West Palm Beach Airport operated one Delta departure Monday, and is set to offer flights on other airlines Tuesday.

In Georgia, Deltas busy Atlanta hub reports that operations are ramping up this morning. Savannah Hilton Head International Airport likewise reports that it is prepared for the resumption of commercial service Tuesday, and that airport parking is open and accessible. Customers who wish to return a rental car may use drop boxes at the counter if an attendant is not on duty.

In all cases, travelers are advised to check with their airline for the latest information on their flight.

The following airlines are offering cancellation or change waivers as a result of the storm:

Damage Update

The storm caused heavy damage in the Florida Keys, where it made landfall in Cudjoe Sunday morning, the Miami Herald reports. As of Monday afternoon it remained unclear how many people were dead, although at least one man was killed in a car crash before the storm hit. The archipelago remained locked down as of late Monday, with the worst damage in an area ranging from Key West to Marathon.

The Washington Post reports that as many as 15 million people in Florida were without power as of Tuesday morning, nearly three-quarters of the states population. In some instances, power may not return for days or weeks.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the storm killed at least three people in Georgia, and one in South Carolina. It also caused severe flooding in Jacksonville.

CBS News reports that Irma also brought massive flooding in South Carolina, including the third-highest storm surge ever in Charleston. About 250,000 customers were without power across the state as of Monday afternoon.

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