6,000 Citrus Co. residents still without power following Hurricane Hermine

U.S. 19 under 4 feet of water this morning
Posted at 5:34 PM, Sep 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-02 18:07:39-04

Hurricane Hermine left her mark on Citrus County.

"It is really sad," said Isaac Young, an Inglis resident who drove down to Old Homosassa to help residents get to and from the store.

Overnight, the area saw heavy rain and high winds.

The pier and boat ramp at Ft. Island Beach were both destroyed.

As water pooled in low lying areas along the coastline, some residents did voluntarily evacuate.

Emory Smith has eight inches of water in his house and was forced to leave around 2 a.m.

"It is a big pain in the butt," said Smith.

Smith came back to his home Friday to access the damage and grab some belongings.

He was among dozens who drove through four feet of water that has pooled off Yulee Road.

ABC Action News was only able to tour the badly flooded areas by hopping in the bed of Young's pickup truck.

"I am helping people get back and forth to the store to get bleach, laundry soap and just supplies," Young said.

County officials report 19 people went to the emergency shelter in Lecanto along with five pets.

Jan Kash, a severe diabetic who lives of North Ozella Trail, among them.

"I am afraid of the terrible winds and didn't know what to expect," explained Kash.

Terry Staley, a 51-year-old who just retired to Homosassa from Orlando, weathered the storm and stayed inside her RV resort.

When she awoke this morning, her neighborhood was under waist deep water.

ABC Action News found her atop a picnic table with her two dogs.

"Trying to get out of here but I haven't been able to get out of here today," she said.

Staley eventually waded to the fence and met a friend who came to pick her up.

"You know where there is a hurricane coming to Homosassa...get out," she added.

Emergency responders say they rescued 40 residents by boat and car Friday.

"There's a lot of work to be done," Young explained.

Shawn Cramer left her house Thursday night.  She came back Friday to check out the damage.

Without a car, she walked barefoot through the flood waters.

"I swam through it," Cramer explained.

Cramer is trying to see the silver lining in the storm.

"It is going to bring jobs," she said.

The Citrus County Sheriff's Office did issue an alert warning residents of unlicensed contractors already coming to the area and soliciting for work.