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Clean-up continues after Palm Coast tornado Saturday night

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Seven homes in Palm Coast were destroyed by a tornado Saturday night, and damage to those homes and others is estimated at over five million dollars. Palm Coast City Communications and Marketing Manager Cindi Lane said Sunday that 22 homes suffered moderate damage and 142 were partially damaged by the tornado. Initial estimates from the National Weather Service said winds could have been as high as 110 miles per hour. No reports of serious injuries or death have been reported as of Sunday afternoon.

City officials say the heaviest damage was reported in the Indian Trails area, east of I-95 and north of Palm Coast Parkway. FlaglerEmergency.com reports that the tornado appeared to move west from the Indian Trails area to parts of Palm Harbor. That appeared to be confirmed by an initial report from the National Weather Service in Jacksonville. Minor damage was also reported in the area of the Hammock. First reports of the tornado started coming into the Sheriff’s Office 911 Center around 7 Saturday night. A tornado warning had been issued just four minutes earlier at 6:56 p.m., and a Code Red warning was issued by Flagler County Emergency Management at 6:58 Saturday night.

Power restored, clean-up continuing

Storm damage also included downed power lines and trees, which blocked roads. The City says power is back on as of Sunday afternoon, but residents should use caution in the areas of the storm due to the “…large amount of debris….” Although roads have been opened, officials urge the public to avoid the storm area. The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office is also “…providing a heavy law enforcement presence…” in the area.

Agencies working the tornado-affected areas include the Palm Coast Fire Department, Flagler County Sheriff’s Office, Flagler County Fire and Flagler County Emergency Management; and Palm Coast City Fire, Public Works, Building and Utility crews. Florida Power Light worked to restore power to around 3,000 homes. The American Red Cross was assisting with providing food and shelter where needed.

Contractors advisory

The City also advised residents in the damaged areas that contractors are in the area already seeking to help with cleanup and repairs. The City says you should always ask to see a copy of the contractor’s license and insurance. You can call the Building Department at 386-986-3780 to verify the license. The City warns that you may be asked by unlicensed persons to “…pull the permit or they [may] try to convince you a permit is not required.” Licensed contractors should also “…always obtain the permit and never ask you to get it for them.” Licensed contractors, according to the City, should always have a license number displayed on “…all business cards, contracts and vehicles that advertise their business….”

To report non-emergency storm-related issues, contact the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency dispatch number at 386-313-4911.

For building or code-related issues, call 386-986-3780 during regular City operating hours.

Other issues can be called to Customer Service at 386-986-2360 during regular business hours, or 888-635-9806 after hours.

Click here to visit the City of Palm Coast website.

You can contact this writer at mroyer5@yahoo.com

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