OKEECHOBEE COUNTY, Fla. — WPTV is taking another look at Okeechobee County’s efforts to clean up the mess left behind from Hurricane Ian.
Five days after the storm’s impact, nearly every power customer has electricity again and cleanup efforts have made huge progress.
The good news is that some residents who feared cleanup would be daunting, but they’ve actually made great progress.
Stacking up fallen branches and debris, Amy Williamson on Monday just got started on cleaning up her home at the Journey’s End mobile home community north of Lake Okeechobee.
Williamson just got in town for the first time since Hurricane Ian’s winds ripped through.
"We just pulled in, rested, and back out trying to clean up our yard," Williamson said.
Not knowing exactly what she’d pull up to, a big surprise considering what her neighbors went through, multiple losing their patios.
Frank Garrison completely lost his glass-enclosed-sunroom.
"A storm for the ages, that’s for sure," Garrison said.
But got some help cleaning up this mess.
"Some guy, just him and his wife, were picking up aluminum, I guess. And he stopped and saw we had some stuff laying here," Garrison said.
For the last five days or so, Garrison slowly chipped away at pickup, now just waiting to repair his sunroom.
But the power is on and power crews nearby work on powering up the remaining power outages.
Last reported under 300, but WPTV stopped by some areas reported as having outages, but the power was restored.
That’s the big final step for Okeechobee County to put an end to their Hurricane Ian cleanup.
WPTV is also watching for what the lake level will do following Hurricane Ian and the downflow of water from northern communities, but so far, rising less than a foot from its pre-storm level.