Trump heads to Florida to survey damage from Hurricane Irma

Elias Hubbard
September 15, 2017

Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert said the planning for the president's trip was done in concert with Florida Gov. Rick Scott's team.

Speaking in front of a Coast Guard helicopter at one of the rescue staging areas, Trump thanked first responders for their efforts during and after Irma - the most powerful storm to strike the United States since Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005. "They went through something I guess you can say the likes of which we've never seen", he told a gaggle of reporters. "So I hope he runs for the Senate" against incumbent Bill Nelson, Trump said.

Trump pledged to be "there for you 100 percent".

GettyPresident Trump with First Lady Melania Trump and Florida Senator Marco Rubio. Nevertheless, the president said he is convinced forward progress to restore power in Florida's 90-plus-degree weather is unprecedented.

US President Donald Trump has arrived in Florida to assess the destruction caused by Hurricane Irma.

In Florida, some 2.69 million homes and businesses were still without power on Thursday, or about 1 in 4 Florida customers.

During their brief trip, President Trump and wife met with state and local leaders, visited a mobile home park damaged in the storm, handed out meals to Hurricane Irma survivors, before heading back to Washington.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency said on Thursday that more than 38,000 federal personnel are now working to respond to Hurricane Irma, including staff from the military and civilian agencies. Trump barely mentioned the victims or witnessed damage during his first visit to the Lone Star State during the storm, though he returned days later to meet with people stranded by the storm and helped serve them meals in shelters.

This is Trump's third visit in less than three weeks to a hurricane-damaged state. He made two stops in Texas after Hurricane Harvey spurred widespread flooding in and around Houston.

The president monitored Irma over this past weekend from Camp David, the presidential retreat in Maryland.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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