Visitors Must Wait as Florida Keys Hurricane Relief Efforts Continue
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
On Tuesday, Florida Keys officials reported that damage assessment and repair is underway in the wake of Hurricane Irma. However, while Keys residents and business owners may reenter the upper keys, vacationers and other visitors are not permitted.
It’s uncertain when the Keys will reopen to visitors. The process of reopening is likely to be staggered. Florida Keys vacation plans will have to wait. Key West vacations may be possible by Friday, October 20th, the start date of the festival Fantasy Fest.
Key West International Airport and Florida Keys Marathon International Airport have suspended commercial flights, charter flights, and general aviation, though they are available for aircraft. The airports are serving as Florida Keys hurricane relief areas, and will allow commercial flights again once water and electricity are restored.
While the Florida Keys hurricane damage is still being inspected, tourist facilities are expected to reopen after communications, water, and power are restored. Some areas will recover quicker than others, as some suffered almost no impact, while others were drastically affected by rising sea levels caused by wind and atmospheric pressure.
The Florida Keys Department of Transportation asserts that the Florida Keys Overseas Highway is safe, although is is undergoing a few repairs, which should be completed by Thursday.
Currently, those in the Keys are expected to abide by a dusk-to-dawn curfew.
Those planning a Florida Keys vacation or Key West vacation can check the Florida Keys and Monroe County Websites for updates on Florida Keys hurricane relief efforts and reconstruction.