Hurricane Matthew: Lake Worth doing its part to help ravaged Haiti

Marie Louse Valentin 54, weeps in front of her shattered home in Morne la Source, Haiti. (Patrick Farrell/Miami Herald/TNS)
Marie Louse Valentin 54, weeps in front of her shattered home in Morne la Source, Haiti. (Patrick Farrell/Miami Herald/TNS)

LAKE WORTH — Lake Worth residents were thankful Hurricane Matthew didn’t cause the type of damage and destruction originally forecast.

Those who live in Haiti, however, weren’t as lucky, where the death toll is anywhere from 400 to 900.

On Oct. 22, the city will host “Put A Little Love In Your Heart: Lake Worth Benefit for Haiti” at CJ’s Island Grill on Lake Ave., from noon to midnight.

Two residents, Melissa McCrannels and Karine Albano formed the group Lake Worth Spared; Lake Worth Cares to help. All money raised will go to the Direct Relief charity.

The Lake Worth Sister City Board is also helping out.

Acts scheduled to perform are; Whiskey Varnish, School of Rock, Jumbo Shrimp, SADA, Sunny Side Swing, Mid Shift Blues and Clay Goldstein’s NattyBos Pro Jam.

For more information, call Albano at 561-676-7698 or email solsticehild@me.com

Business as usual in Lake Worth after Hurricane Matthew

This gumbo limbo tree by the City Hall Annex was one of several that were blown over during Hurricane Matthew. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)
This gumbo limbo tree by the City Hall Annex was one of several that were blown over during Hurricane Matthew. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)

LAKE WORTH — It’s basically business as usual in the city after Hurricane Matthew.

And that’s a good thing.

The only exception is city crews are still picking up vegetation piles it couldn’t get to on Friday, City Manager Michael Bornstein said.

So, what about the gumbo limbo tree that fall outside the City Hall Annex?

“It’s been re-staked by Smart Plants and we expect it to keep on growing and putting down roots,
Bornstein said. “Like our city, it is resilient and in a great spot.”

 

Hurricane Matthew: What’s next for Lake Worth?

This tree by the City Hall Annex was one of several that were blown over last night. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)
This tree by the City Hall Annex was one of several that were blown over last night. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)

LAKE WORTH — City officials are thankful Lake Worth avoided what could have been a catastrophic storm.

So, here’s how Lake Worth plans to return to business as usual after Hurricane Matthew.

Today

  • Disaster teams fan out across the city making assessments to determine safety of structures and facilities;
  • Public Services continues to clear roadways to ensure safe passage.
  • Public Services clears storm drains of any debris so that water may enter drainage systems.
  • Electric crews inspect power lines and are clearing issues they encounter.
  • Lake Worth Pier remains closed due to high tides and waves.
  • Lake Worth Beach remains closed due to high tides, waves, and rip currents.
  • Lake Worth Beach and Casino businesses, restaurants and parking are open.
  • Lake Worth Golf Course remains closed – restaurant is open.
  • City offices remain closed
  • Library is closed.

Saturday

  • Refuse Division will make rounds to pick-up storm related vegetation only left curb-side.  Landscape trimmings cut today will not be picked up.  Household items, building items and  bulk items left by the curb or mixed with the vegetation will be subject to fines.  Normal scheduled collection of these items will begin on Monday.
  • Lake Worth Beach will open to the public.
  • Golf course will open to the public.
  • Parks will open to the public.
  • Library is closed.

Hurricane Matthew: 200 Lake Worth residents without power, far lower than previous storms

 

This tree by the City Hall Annex was one of several that were blown over last night. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)
This tree by the City Hall Annex was one of several that were blown over last night. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)

LAKE WORTH — As of 7:30 a.m., about 200 residents were without power, according to City Manager Michael Bornstein.

At the height of Hurricane Matthew last night, Bornstein said 750 people lost power. He said that was quickly resolved after wind speeds dropped enough for crews to fix the problem.

Hurricane Matthew: Full coverage

The numbers are far lower than what they have been in years past and good news for the city.

Photos: Hurricane Matthew in Palm Beach County

This morning workers are cleaning up roadway debris. Bornstein said several trees were blown over and there are palm fronds and limbs scattered around.

The city said it will pick up on storm-related vegetation debris on Saturday. Plywood, fences, roof materials, construction related debris won’t be picked up, with the city urging residents not to mix those items with vegetation debris.

After the storm: Tips on how to recover

 

 

Hurricane Matthew: Downtown Lake Worth looking good

matthew-downtown-lake-worth
Downtown Lake Worth (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)

LAKE WORTH — Downtown Lake Worth is looking no worse for wear after Hurricane Matthew.

No flooding. All traffic signals working. No apparent damages to local businesses, most of which boarded up.

There are a few small tree branches on Lake and Lucerne Avenues and one downed tree next to the City Hall Annex, but, after a quick survey of the area, downtown — like the rest of Palm Beach County — dodged a serious bullet.

Hurricane Matthew: Full coverage

Photos: Hurricane Matthew in Palm Beach County

After the storm: Tips on how to recover

Lake Worth warns residents about flood-prone areas

Hurricane Matthew and high tide aren’t a good combination.

Hurricane Matthew: Full coverage

Lake Work city officials want residents to avoid these flood-prone areas:

  • 17th Avenue South:  South Lakeside Drive to Intracoastal Drive
  • 18th Avenue South:  South Lakeside Drive to Dead End East
  • North Federal Highway:  18th Avenue North to Wellesly Drive
  • West side of Lake Worth Bridge at Intracoastal
  • North Golfview & South Golfview:  2nd Avenue North to 3rd Avenue South
  • South Federal Highway:  8th Avenue South to 10th Avenue South
  • 16th Avenue North:  North Lakeside Drive to the East Dead End
  • Dixie Highway:  Lucerne Avenue to 2nd Avenue North
  • Dixie Highway:  2nd Avenue North to 4th Avenue North
  • North Golfview Drive:  7th Avenue North to 16th Avenue North

Upcoming high tides – on Friday at 12:19 a.m. and 12:57 p.m. and Saturday at 1:08 a.m. and 1:49 p.m. – could make flooding problems worse.

Hurricane Matthew feeder band
Hurricane Matthew feeder band

Photos: Hurricane Matthew’s effects on Florida

Storm 2016: Tracking map, full preparedness guide

Weather Plus Blog: Latest forecast, check Matthew’s path

Interactive tracking map: See where Matthew is headed

Storm preparedness guide: How to make sure you’re safe

Limited power outages in Lake Worth – so far

So far – and it is early in Hurricane Matthew’s march up the Florida coast – power outages in Lake Worth have been limited.

Lake Worth City Manager Michael Bornstein said 11 homes are without power and one power line is down. The storm has knocked down a tree at N. Dixie Highway and N. 3rd Avenue.

Lake Worth City Manager Michael Bornstein
Lake Worth City Manager Michael Bornstein

Hurricane Matthew: long reach from Bahamas to Lake Worth

Want some idea of the massive size of Hurricane Matthew?

A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration station at Settlement Point on Grand Bahama recently reported a sustained wind of 58 miles per hour and a wind gust of 74 miles per hour.

Meanwhile, a National Ocean Service station at Lake Worth Pier – roughly 90 miles away – recently reported a sustained wind of 41 miles per hour and a gust of 48 miles per hour.

Wind brought by Hurricane Matthew blow palm trees on Paradise Island in Nassau, Bahamas, Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016.  The head of the Bahamas National Emergency Management Authority, Capt. Stephen Russell, said there were many downed trees and power lines, but no reports of casualties. (AP Photo/Tim Aylen)
Hurricane Matthew winds blow palm trees on Paradise Island in Nassau, Bahamas, Thursday. The head of the Bahamas National Emergency Management Authority, Capt. Stephen Russell, said there were many downed trees and power lines, but no reports of casualties. (AP Photo/Tim Aylen)

Here’s a graphic on Hurricane Matthew’s wind speed.

Hurricane Matthew: Nearly 1000 seek shelter at Forest Hill High

The storm shelter at Forest Hill High School is now only accepting people who are walking in or being dropped off at the shelter.

People with vehicles are being redirected to the next closest shelter, John I. Leonard High School at 4701 10th Ave. N. in Greenacres.

By 4:08 p.m., 958 Hurricane Matthew evacuees had chosen to shelter at Forest Hill High School. And more were trudging through squally wind and rain to take refuge there. A single nurse was managing the health care needs of those at the shelter, but others – volunteers – were pitching in to help her.

Hundreds of families are seeking safe harbor at local shelters across Palm Beach County. (Damon Higgins/ The Palm Beach Post)
Hundreds of families have sought refuge at local shelters. (Damon Higgins/Palm Beach Post)

A British television crew filmed as people spread out on blankets amid bags of food, medicine and other emergency supplies. A 6-day old baby slept next to his mother.

One cafeteria was designed as a family area. The room was split between a row of tables, where people sat to watch ESPN and Hurricane Matthew updates, and a sleeping area where families tried to get some rest. Another set of tables, tipped on their sides, acted as a barrier.

“A shelter is not the comfort of home,” said Robert Balodano, a spokesman for the American Red Cross, which is managing the shelter. “It’s life and safety we’re focused on.”

As the British crew filmed, 61-year old Norma Jean Gloyd looked on. Unable to pay for the home she shared with her husband before his death a year ago, she had been living in a hotel in Lake Worth for the past 8 months.

Gloyd said she thought the high school would be a safer place to ride out Hurricane Matthew.

“I feel safe,” she said. “It’s a concrete building.”

Gloyd, who arrived at Forest Hill High with her daughter and her two granddaughters,  praised the law enforcement and Red Cross employees who staffed the shelter.

“This is a good place,” she said. “They’ve treated us well, given us food.”

And yet worries about the hurricane persists.

“I am afraid of the storm,” she said. “I know God is with us. I know we have to have a positive attitude and believe everything will be fine.”

Hurricane Matthew: Maya Center aids immigrant families during storm

By Julio Poletti/ Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

The Guatemalan-Maya Center offers programs for immigrants and their families. (Palm Beach Post file)
The Guatemalan-Maya Center offers programs for immigrant families. (Palm Beach Post file)

Lake Worth’s  Guatemalan-Maya Center may have shuttered for the storm Wednesday afternoon, but the social service agency is still aiding the local immigrant population. Help is just a phone call away, says a center representative.

“Keep yourself informed,” is Tim Gamwell’s message. He’s the center’s assistant executive director. “We have a hotline, where people can receive more information.”

That hotline number:  561-633-2052

Gamwell says the center’s staff will still be working throughout Hurricane Matthew, either from home or shelters around South Florida. The hotline is the fastest way to reach them. Services via telephone will be provided in English, Spanish and several Mayan languages such as Mam and Q’anjobalan.

The Guatemalan-Maya Center is a nonprofit agency in Palm Beach County which provides services to indigenous communities, such as running after school programs for immigrant children, helping with cases of domestic abuse, offering legal aid and translations of government documents. However, their services are not limited to Mayan communities.

Huracán Mathew: Centro de Guatemala Maya en Lake Worth cerrado.

Julio Poletti/ Reportero del Palm Beach Post 

Al ver que el huracán Matthew se aproxima a Florida, según indican las últimas actualizaciones del Servicio Meteorológico Nacional, El Centro Maya de Guatemala en Lake Worth ha decidido cerrar sus instalaciones desde ayer por la tarde, aunque todavía están brindando ayuda de forma remota.

Tim Gamwell, el asistente del director ejecutivo de esta fundación sin fines de lucro, informa que todos deben mantenerse informados durante el huracán, y pueden hacerlo comunicándose con la línea telefónica de asistencia de El Centro Maya de Guatemala:

561-633-2052

Gamwell indica que sus empleados seguirán trabajando a lo largo del huracán Matthew, ya sea desde sus hogares o desde refugios y proveerán asistencia a través de esta línea telefónica en Inglés, español y varios idiomas mayas, como Mam y Q’anjobalan.

El Centro Maya de Guatemala es una agencia sin fines de lucro en el condado de Palm Beach que ofrece varios servicios a comunidades indígenas, tales como el manejo de casos de abuso doméstico, asistencia legal y traducciones de documentos del gobierno. Sin embargo, sus servicios no se limitan únicamente a las comunidades mayas.