Hurricane Irma had knocked out power to more than 1.6 million customers in Florida just before noon Sunday, according to outage maps from the state's utilities, who were warning that some people may not regain electricity for weeks, despite billions of dollars in investments to strengthen the power grid in recent years. Some customers who experienced outages Saturday and had their power restored - some 120,000 in Miami-Dade and Broward - could be hit again.
FPL chose to shut only one of the two reactors at its Turkey Point nuclear plant on Saturday because the storm track shifted, and plans to leave both reactors at the St Lucie plant in service because hurricane force winds are no longer expected to hit the sites. As Irma's path changed, the decision was made to leave the second reactor online, as hurricane-force winds were no longer expected at the site. The two facilities are Florida's only operating nuclear power plants.
"Unfortunately, we're not immune to Irma's wrath", said FPL vice president and chief communications officer Rob Gould. On Friday, the utility had estimated that 4.1 million accounts or 9 million people would lose power in the storm. "A storm of this magnitude an intensity will require us in many cases to completely rebuild out electric system from the ground up, particularly on the west coast".
FPL also warned residents to stay away from downed power lines.
Flagler and Volusia counties could see wind gusts up to 90 miles per hour early Monday morning.