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Posted: 9/6/2004 10:55:42 AM EST
Well, the eye of Frances passed right over my house Saturday night, and it was an interesting experience to say the least. Actually, the official center of the eye was located approximately 1/2 mile from my home.

The only damage I sustained on my house was the loss of my screen enclosure around the pool, and 2 rain gutters ripped from the house. The screen frame went just as the eye wall was passing and may have been caused by a mini-tornado. There was a noticably louder howling then a loud boom followed by clanking and banging. Once the eye was overhead, I went outside expecting to see part of the screen frame down. The entire thing was flattened. I sunk the remnants of the frame in the pool to prevent them from becoming missles and went back to bed. The storm moved so slowly that the eye remained over us from about 1:00am to 6:00am. We slept peacefully through the calm. The dawn revealed 3 downed trees (palms) in my yard but no other destruction.

I'm now in my office at the local municipal utility in Ft. Pierce, 20 miles to the north. Restoring electric and water service to the city is going to take many long tiring days as this area was hit much harder than my area 20 miles to the south. While my home had a period of calm during the eye's passing, Ft. Pierce had the edge of the eye passing over it at the same time. So while we rested, they were battered for 5 hours by the strongest winds of the storm. Vero Beach, slightly to Ft. Pierce's north, fared as badly.

Still, it could have been worse had the winds not dropped to 115 mph before landfall. Now that I've been through a Cat 2 storm and know what that's like, I can guarantee that I'm not going to stick around if a Cat 3 or 4 ever comes through.

Well, back to the problems at hand...
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