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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  September 12, 2017 9:00pm-10:00pm PDT

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see how much you can save. choose by the gig or unlimited. xfinity mobile. a new kind of network designed to save you money. call, visit or go to xfinitymobile.com. good evening, we're broadcasting tonight from florida. a street as you see has no power, a street of which most of the houses escaped unscathed. certainly not the house behind me where a tree was up reted and lifted up about half of the house. the effects of hurricane irma are being felt all over this state. still, there's a lot to report over the next two hours. we're also going to be focusing what's happening in the caribbean where the storm has passed. there's now 15 deaths attributed
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to storm. 12 of them right here in the state of florida. 90% of the homes were either majorly damaged or can completely destroyed. over the next two hours we're going to hear from survivors riding out the storm. complete devastation in parts of the virgin island where people feel they're ignored. we're going to try to get their story out tonight. st. croix, st. john, st. thomas as well as many other smaller islands. here in florida millions of people are still without power. florida power and light says the eastern people on the side of state may get power back over the weekend. here on the west side they're shooting for september 22nd. that's next friday. lisa cronezis one who road out
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the storm in key west. what's the situation right now? what are you seeing around you? >> right now they're clearing the road of the tree ask debris. right now there's no power, and the cellphones aren't working. i think people can look with the google noa app. some houses have damage of the roofs in key west. it had really high winds but not destructive. big pine on the other hand and sugarloaf i here are destroyed. fema is not producing the food they're supposed to or the amount of food. they brought some mres, not enough for 500 people who lined up to get them. hopefully that situation gets fixed. we had cellphone service for five minutes today.
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i have at&t, and i found a land line. that's how we're communicating at aqua nightclub with eren huntsman. >> you decided to stay behind. what was your thinking on staying behind? >> it flooded our home. had we not been here and couldn't have gotten in our home immediately to fix it, it would have been a disaster. there was water, saltwater. people couldn't get back into town for a week and a half. i'm also an rn, so i do have the ability to help people. i'm a volunteer but also an rn, period. i certainly can help. mainly i wanted to make sure my kids were out of town and that we could get back, assess the damage and fix any problems. and i think erin was doing the same thing. once you're out, you're out. it's going to take a long time for people to get back here. we've got looters that are
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around. we had someone knocking on our door last night as a matter of fact. so, you know, it's a situation where i'd rather be here than away wondering what happened to the house. we have a curfew right now from sundown to sunset, sun up. >> you were riding out the storm in a hotel. what was it like during the height of the storm? >> we were in a safe spot. the hotel lost power and the sewage line was backing up. so the hotel was not any dp, but it was a safe spot. you asked why didn't run, too. until the very end we looked like we were going to be fine. like key west looked like the only spot in florida that was going to be fine. so where do you run to? my son went to alabama. we stayed back to assess the home damage. anderson, i'm going to have to go because they're trying to curfew about right now. >> lisa, appreciate it. you stay safe.
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jointing me now on the phone is key west city manager, jim scholl. we have two deaths confirmed in the keys is that still accurate and how are authorities in key west trying to account for everyone? >> anderson, good evening. there were two deaths one was in key west, it wasn't immediately storm related we don't believe. the accountability of it, key west did not take a very major brunt of the storm. we don't have that much structural damage in key west, it is worst up the keys. but our biggest challenge thus far has been moving debris out of the roadways so that the roads are passable. i don't know of any issues with people being trapped, we're not doing search and rescue in key west. i know there's still some --
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some resources doing that up the keys from us where conditions were worse. key west is in the process of recovery. we got 80% of the roads passable now, they're moving the debris off to the sides of the road. we're going to start the clean-up process here soon where we go out and pick up all of the debris and get the town cleaned up. the biggest challenge we have is the lack of power, lack of water. and fortunately this evening we got our waste water treatment plant up and functioning, which is big public health issue as you know, but that will help us once the water gets turned onto be able to work our way back to normal operations for the city of key west. >> well, a lot of that is very good news. the department defense says there's more than 10,000 people who rode out the storm may be
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evacuated due to outages. monroe county has called it not true. do you have any clarity on what's happening? do you think there will be a need to have large numbers of people evacuate from the keys if. >> anderson, i don't think so at all. we were not aware of that information. myself down here in key west and the monroe county emergency management folks, everybody who evacuated and heeded the order that was good. those that are here, we're working to obviously provide services and not overextend the resources that we had. now that we're receiving, but there's at this point, certainly in key west there's no need for an evacuation. i can tell you that the florida keys authority is working very hard at restoring the water. they've -- they've done a tremendous job today with their crews out there reducing the number of leaks in the system. they got water pressure from marathon to key largo all the
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way down to marathon. they're going to work their way down the keys and restore water pressure to our community. and that is obviously an issue, and that's why we don't want people to in mass return down here to the keys. and we certainly understand that everybody wants to get down here and check out their home. anderson, if i may i can tell you i live up the keys, i was able to make it up there in daylight today. i live on the island of kudlow key, which is where the eye came ashore. and my house is still standing. the roof's intact and the house was dry inside and so are all the neighbor's house around me. it's not as high a number of damage as being what is publicly proclaimed. >> that's certainly good news. we're trying to get as accurate
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information and relying on people like you and other officials. we appreciate it. go ahead jim. >> the statement made earlier that 90% of the homes in the keys have major damage and that's certainly nowhere near the case down here in key west and the immediate area. like i say up there in kudlow which was in the heart of the eye wall landing in my small neighborhood t not any major damage that i saw. >> well, that's really good to know again. we hear one official says one thing an estimate, and sometimes maybe they rode a chopper over and their guesstimating. we appreciate talking to you on the ground and you telling us what you've seen in the keys. jim i appreciate it. the power outages is one of the biggest challenges at this point. nearly 5 million customers without power in florida.
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nearly a million others are in the dark through the rest of the southeast. in florida we'll see daytime high temperatures into the 90s this week. it's going to get pretty unpleasant. all that work's got to be done. no phone, communication, if you have a landline that could work. but not cell service in a lot of places. no refrigeration, obviously, because no electricity. cnn's miguel marquez with more. >> we put the pork chop, chicken and sauce savaged, he gone tuck sausage on the grill. >> reporter: still without electricity, the only option. how difficult is it to live day to day here? >> it's sad. and it's hard. because the stove don't even got no more meat when it's gone out we done. >> reporter: with many displaced by the hurricane, walker now has
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8 people living in her house today, she's cooking for twelve and she still doesn't know when the lights are going to be on. >> you keep calling they say they don't know when it's gone be back on. >> reporter: how many times have you called? >> 60 times. >> reporter: nearly 60% of the people live in poverty. >> as you can see all of our vegetables for cooking, they're all rotten. >> reporter: he has a wife and five kids. >> it's tough because i don't have any meals. even if i had bought it, i wouldn't have been able to store it. >> reporter: and there's nowhere else for you to go? >> there's nowhere else for me to go. >> reporter: no power, no meat or milk either. for every day you're without electricity how hard is life? >> very hard and stressful. because you can see how hot the
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sun is. imagine you can't turn the ac on. >> reporter: here across florida there's not one problem but thousands. trees fell everywhere bringing power lines down with them. crews from florida and beyond working around the clock. but the damage widespread and massive. water and sometimes ice can't be distributed fast enough here. water and food in short supply. >> there's no hope. >> reporter: so where does the next meal come from? no one knows. i don't know. just put my hope to god. >> reporter: the mayor expects full power to be restored during the weekend. >> first time we ever had a mandatory evacuation. >> reporter: a historical record
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they never hope to repeat or break. >> and cnn's miguel marquez joins us. now, how realistic is it that people in that community may get power back this weekend. the food supplies are running low. >> reporter: yeah, the problems are so widespread. i do want to point out this is tuesday night in downtown bell glade, and it is dark. there are parts of the town starting to see electricity come back. other towns around here are also out. florida power and light says on the east coast they expect to have most of the problem dealt with by this sunday. on the west coast, they say it'll take up to the 22nd next friday. but here in the center of the state, it's very unclear. the mayor is not making a lot of promise, a real hard promise. but he hopes by the end of this weekend the lights will come back on here as well as the west coast of florida.
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anderson. >> miguel, appreciate that report today. thanks very much. power outages not the only big obstacle in florida right nu. fuel shortages in some places. >> reporter: anderson, i can tell you that actually right now we're in north tampa -- go head. >> sorry, what are they doing to combat this. what's the situation? >> reporter: so, anderson, the governor has done quite a bit at this point. he's waived the fuel tax entering this state. he's also made it not a limit. he's asked ten other states to waive how much a vehicle can way, the driver restricts just to get as much fuel here. it's not working, though. my roducer and i got gas at this
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gas station three hours ago. since then, no fuel. we've got another fuel truck at this point. there are highway patrol officers who are dedicated solely to bringing fuel trucks like this one through the state of florida. they want to make sure they can get as much as possible. the supply does not out weigh the demand. and that's the problem. so many people who are coming home from north florida, from other states trying to go down south, they have got -- they have fuel rierlts. there are people here, who many of them, anderson, don't have power in their house so they're using their cars as refuge. it's very hot here, trying to get ac. they're charging their phones because that's how they're checking on friends and family. we talked to triple a agents here who said they're replacing
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batteries. the fuel does seem to be coming in at a faster rate, but it doesn't seem to be fast enough. we've got a lot more ahead from the keys over the next two hours and from all over the sfafl. also the storm hits home from country music star. he tells us how he helped people survive the storm. people were using his house he wasn't in. he's been trying to help people out and relief in. but there's a lot of need. we'll talk about that also coming up. over the course of 9 days... steve chooses to walk 26.2 miles, that's a marathon. and he does it with dr. scholl's. only dr. scholl's has massaging gel insoles that provide all-day comfort to keep him feeling more energized. dr. scholl's. born to move.
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randy kaye saw first-hand the damage in the keys. so randy what was it like? >> reporter: anderson, we hitched a ride with a couple of guys. one that lives here year-round. he runs a fishing charter company and one who lives in jupiter, florida, but owns a house here. coming down you can see deeper and deeper as we got into the keys the worse it got. boats flipped on their sides, out from the docks, roofs ripped from homes. we're in kudlow-key, and we could see boats off their moorings and in people's yards. and really just huge chunks
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missing. here's just a sample of our trip with them today. mike has lived in the florida keys for years running a fishing charter. >> my house is still there. look at the boats piled up there. >> reporter: how does your house look to you? >> it looks like it's still there. it's all destroyed. wow, the house is totally gone. >> really kind of excited to see what's left. that's totaled. >> reporter: this is your home rig right here? >> yeah, one of them. beat up but survived. not horrible. underneath my house looks a lot
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different. >> reporter: why? how so? well, i didn't have a lot of this stuff here before. that's not mine. >> reporter: the eye went right over your house. isn't it amazing it's still standing? >> yeah, i'm ecstatic. they changed our building codes about five years ago, and i think it made all the difference. >> reporter: so we are told that there were 130 miles an hour sustained winds over kudlow key with gusts going about 160 to 180 miles an hour here which explains why there was so much damage. the other guy on the helicopter with us, don brady, he had some damage, too. the pool was black and not bright blue with all this debris in. and there happen two freezers in that room. his house is down that way, and
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his freezers are down here in the neighbors lawn. we're working with limited resources here because we don't have a lot of battery power. and this house across the street, i don't know if you can see the garage door is bent and the roof completely fallen off the house. and they had a 442 foot yacht here and attached in the water. and it was sort of acting like a pin ball in a pin ball machinech it ended up a few blocks away on its side on top of the bank here in the canal. so there was a lot of damage here, anderson. there still isn't any power. people have some generators, but there's some police in the area. it's just a very, very difficult situation getting around here for a lot of these folks in kudlow key, which the eye of the storm went right over. >> before it headed for florida, hurricane irma caused a lot of destruction on islands in the caribbean including the u.s. virgin islands.
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right now i want to get an update. irma hit st. thomas as a cat 5 storm. what's the damage there like? >> reporter: anderson, it was absolutely stunning from the moment we got here. actually before we got here, we pulled up on a boat trying to get on this island. as you mentioned, irma hit this island, st. thomas before it hit the continental united states. it was one of the first islands to be in the path of the storm. and it's very clear being here for just a few hours, this island is going to have a very long road to recovery. six days after that storm hit this island, it is still incredibly difficult to get people and supplies on and off this island. and what we witnessed here today were the locals helping each other to get those essentials into this island. people with resources like yachts, boats, private jets and airplanes, things that, you
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know, normally make for very happy times with caribbean life on an island, they're now using them to ferry in bottled water, medicine, food, formula, supplies like diapers for babies, things they are simply running out of. i spent to so many people who spent days, anderson, trapped in their own homes and neighborhoods and eventy had to just chain saw themselves out just to get out down the street, down to the town. the majority of this island has no power. many people have no water, little water or no drinkable water. and the foreseeable future, this could go on for weeks if not months before we see that power restored to this island. it's simply the nature of an island like this. even in the best of times it's hard to get resources on and off. now what they're looking at in the future is what this will do
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to their economy, tourism if they cannot bring power and the infrastructure back relatively soon, not only will this continue to affect their day to day lives but their well-being in general, anderson. >> sarah, i know you've only been there for a few hours. have useen much of the federal u.s. government support on the ground? i mean you were talking about supplies running low and residents there whoer helping each other. but is there a massive relief effort coming in at this point, or is it still kind of piecemeal? >> reporter: there is a relief effort. we're actually at the local management headquarters. fema was here before the storm even hit. they were prepared. the lieutenant governor actually camped out for the storm in this building behind me. and there is military assistance here, but the thing is the airport is badly damaged. the ferry terminals just started
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to be up and running today and just yesterday. so getting those supplies in and out and very tricky. evacuations, there was a cruise ship that came and evakted some people today. and there are ferry boats, but a majority of the people we see they're waiting for their belongings, but strangers are bringing their boats in to try and get people out to st. croix, to puerto rico, to a nearby island they can get to safety. some of those people are going to return. some of those people say they will not. >> i'm glad you're there because i know a lot of people on had islands have felt kind of neglected or their story isn't being told. up next, almost a dozen people survived a direct hit from a hurricane. i'll speak with kenny and one-his friends who just got out today next. you too, unnecessary er visits.
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islands. country music star kenny chezny has been a resident there for years. he loves st. john. he wasn't there when it was hit. but 17 of his friends were riding out the storm in his house. they survived, and with kenny's help they were able to get off the island. he's determined to try and get as much attention to st. thomas, to st. john and the needs of the island. one of the people who road out the storm in his house, i spoke to. kenny, you love st. john, you've been there for a long time. when you see the images of what's happened there, what goes through your mind? >> it's a lot of heart break, anderson. it's really just so many emotions running through my head and through my heart. it's hard to put into words really because i've got so many
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memories there, so many friends there, so many fabrics and pieces of my life on that island. and it's -- to see that devastation and to see what it is today when i was just there last week, it's really, really heart breaking because i know what all my friends are going through and what all the wonderful people of that island are going through. and my heart breaks for them and breaks for all of us, really. >> and kate, you were there until today. you just got out today, and what's it been like for the last couple of days? >> it's been terrifying. it's the scariest thing i've ever been through in my entire life. luckily, i've been in st. john for about 11 years. and we were going to stay at my friend mandy's house. we thought that was our safest option. but at last minute we got to go up to this guy's house and it
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literally saved our lives. because if we had gone to mandy's it could have been pretty bad. my house wez pretty much destroyed. but we had a really good solid group at the house. and then we thought we were a safe spot but the window blew in. then we went into the laundry room, and we had 17 of us including five dogs and four kids. and someone grabbed a couple of mattresses and we ended up in there for five hours with a washing machine and dryer and five guys taking turns rotating in and out holding up the door so it wouldn't blow in. there was also flooding. luckily there was bucket out there we were able to dump the water out and kind of keep it from not completely flooding. but it was pretty traumatizing. the parents that were with me
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did a great job of keeping the kids safe and not even really thinking that we had a problem and we were as scared as we were. i've heard some more horror stories from other people. luckily everyone that i know has been accounted for and okay. i work on a boat. those boats are all damaged, so it's pretty bad. most of my friends lost their homes, don't have anywhere to go. a lot of them don't, but it's pretty devastating. >> and kenny, i know you opened up your house to kate and a lot of your friends as she was saying. you and were texting before we went on-air. and you said the house is just wood and stone. a house can be replaced. is the house itself destroyed? >> yeah, it's pretty much gone,
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anderson. i was just talking with all my friends that i flew up here off the island, and they reminded me of something that was very important. what she just said, a hurricane can destroy an island. it can teardown houses. it can devastate all her friend's homes, my home, whatever. but the one thing i really love about all the people on the islands over the years is their heart and their spirit and how resilient they are. and a hurricane can take away all of our stuff, my house, kate's house, all the boats she worked on, all my friend's boats. but they cannot take away our heart and our spirit and how resilient everybody is. and that's one of the things that really drew me to the island in the first place. it was a very eclectic group of people that loved life, loved
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music and loved living. and i always felt it took a little bit kind of a different soul to live there in the first place. you've really got to live there to live there. but it says a lot about a person when they stick it out over the years. and for something like this to happen, it can take away everything we have, but it cannot take away our spirit and our heart. >> we're going to have more my interview with kevinchiesny and kate hanny within the next hour. he's looking for ways to help st. john not just immediate relief but long-term. we'll have more within the next hour. up next, mayor jackson told us last night the danger is not over.
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we heard from the jacksonville mayor last night the worst is not over. evacuations are still happening, we're told. gary tuchman went to residential neighborhoods to see what families were doing, and here's his report. >> reporter: molly is fearful of what she'll find as she and her cousin and her dog winny return to the jacksonville home she just moved into last month. the bedroom floor still has some water, but molly soon discovers the water was almost a foot deep. >> this is wet. >> reporter: she's fairly stowic about her damaged bed and furniture elsewhere in the home. but what got to her was the discovery of personal and sentimental papers that was kept in a folder, a folder that wasn't left in a high enough place. >> i'm really sorry. >> it's okay. it's just % likely to see damage of her home in jacksonville, too. >> i'm really glad i have the support of family and go back to work and figure it out. >> gary, what can you tell us about the over all feel of jacksonville?
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>> the people of jacksonville fire rescue say since yesterday they've conducted 356 rescues. not all of those people and families were in dire straights, but all were surrounded by hour. more than 3,000 people slept in shelters. and we're told 15 neighborhoods here in jacksonville either were under water or are still under water. anderson. >> gary tuchman, thanks very much. this street really faired pretty well compared to a lot of places. and you don't have electricity right now. >> no. and apparently not until next saturday. >> your neighbor's house is probably the worst damaged on this street. and i don't know know if folks at home can see, but this giant tree up rooted and the roots of it just up lifted most of the house offer the ground. did you hear this happening? >> we did. it didn't sound like a tree, but then again, i hadn't heard that before in my life. >> thankfully. >> yeah, and shortly thereafter we saw what was going on. we tried to check on the neighbors as best we could. they got in the block portion of their home. >> so they actually were here?
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>> they were here and they were inside a closet he said for about 15 hours. >> wow. and they're obviously not living in this house now. >> no, they're currently at a hotel as we understand it. >> what's it like in terms of supply? everyone says you need supplies, coming up on the third day. >> yeah, we have stocked up as well as possible. i've been a florida native. i've never been stocked up for a hurricane or worried about one until irma was so big. and we went around for days. we got three cases of water. we made sure to have plenty for the kids and pets and canned goodies and nonperables. luckily we were aible to get a generator from a friend tonight. we're all just kind of working together. >> it's one of things so many people pay attention to when the storm's hitting and the immediate aftermath.
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but then day three, day four, day five, two weeks later that adrenaline is gone, and it's just the mizary it's hot, no power, food's running low, you've got the kids. it's just miserable. >> yeah, yeah. it absolutely is. the main thing is we're in florida in september and no one has ac. that seems to be everyone's maker complaint. for now we're happy we're all safe, everyone made it through the storm and we're looking to get our power back on as soon as possible. >> thanks for being so friendly to us here on the street. some of the neighbors actually brought us pepsi's which we appreciated. up next the destruction on the caribbean. i'm going to speak to a pilot. we'll show you the results ahead. to its roots.
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now packed into a pill so small, we call it mini. new clearminis from nexium 24hr. see heartburn differently. there's a lot of people in the caribbean who feel like their stories haven't been getting out. we heard earlier in the program from kenny chesney who has a place in saint john. and a friend of his who he was able to help get out. he got a bunch of people out. he's trying to get supplies in and we're going to talk more to ken in the next hour. we want to focus on what's happening on saint martin. one side is dutch and the other side is french. wade freed is a pilot on st. martin.
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the dutch coast guard on saint martin contacted him and asked him to help with missions after the storm hit. he was one of the first people to fly to the island and he's been flying three rescue missions a day. he joins us now on the phone to talk about what he's seeing. what's it like, wade? i've been to that island. it's a beautiful island, both sides. the dutch side, the french side. what's it like now. >> it's devastating, actually. i did the first reconnaissance mission in just as irma was barely leaving. it was still pretty windy and the skies were just starting to clear, and it was shocking. the devastation -- there's really not a building that's not in some shape or form affected with i would guess about 75% of the buildings are uninhabitable. it's sad. i know the people as well there. because we fly in and out of there with search and rescue, it's a beautiful island and it's unfortunately just been
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destroyed because of this. >> let me just get to you repeat that. by your estimate, and you've been flying a bunch of missions there, you think 75% of the houses are uninhabitable right now? >> that's correct, yeah. that's probably a pretty fair assessment. i've seen ranges from 70 to 90, but that's a pretty safe assessment. you know -- >> where are the people staying? where are people? >> well, this is where it becomes difficult. where houses are standing, there is some evacuation areas. tents. there's a lot of people that are also trying to get off the island as well, so at the airport there's a lot of people waiting to be extracted off the island as well. >> are there many relief flights coming in not only with supplies but also to get off the island?
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>> yes, there is. the dutch government has been doing a phenomenal job of trying to get everybody as quickly as possible who needs to get off, off. there's 75,000 people on both sides. i should note, anderson, now after something like this happens, really, it's one island. there's really no boarders. you're trying to help out our fellow man. flights are getting in, the weather is good now. we continue to bring supplies in. we're continuing to take people out. >> do you know about the distribution system? obviously in the most populated areas it's easy to distribute supplies, but once you bring them in i assume to the airport, or if others are bringing in things by boat, are things being distributed? >> i couldn't really guess on that, anderson.
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i know there's a gasoline pump on the island, so getting stuff around from the airport is difficult, but beyond that, i couldn't tell you. >> what kind of stuff are you flying in? you said you did three missions today. are you flying supplies in? are you ferrying people back and forth? >> both. it's not just me. we have a team and a bunch of pilots here and a bunch of people and crews here doing all the flying. we're doing both. the idea is bring people up. initially it was the dutch marines. now it's red cross and those sort of agencies. we don't have a spare seat when we leave. we load up people that desperately need to get off the island and we take them off. >> where do they go? >> we're taking them back to
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curaçao which is part of the dutch island to the south. we can get them on flights. some people quite frankly are staying with family down here. there's a lot of families volunteering their houses. especially children, organizing so children can go to school. go back to some normalcy in life. >> wade, gosh, what you're doing is incredible. we really appreciate it. we appreciate you taking the time to get the word out. that's one of the things for people going through this, it is vital that the word gets out so that more aid comes in and that people know what is going on. particularly for the loved ones they can't get in touch with. sadly we just the learned death toll rose to 38 people in the caribbean. we'll have more from that region coming up. meanwhile the death toll in florida has climbed to 12. we'll get an update from the florida keys and see what's
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happening on the ground. we have reporters on the ground throughout the keys. we'll be right back. ♪ ♪ where do you want to go next? ♪ ♪ only the platinum card gives you more reasons to go anywhere and everywhere. ♪ ♪ earn rewards like never before with 5 times points on flights, from american express. ♪ ♪ because there's always more world, there's platinum. backed by the service and security of american express.
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the story here in florida is many without a power. that extends to georgia, alabama, and the carolinas. i want to go to bill weir in the keys in a boat

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