MEXICO BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) — Miami’s Task Force 2 is hard at work conducting house searches in some of the worst hit areas of Mexico Beach, which was devastated by Hurricane Michael.
7News was with them as their house to house searches have led them to tragic discoveries, including bodies.
Many who survived Hurricane Michael don’t have a way to get in contact with loved ones or authorities for help. The only way of communication is through a satellite phone, which a lot of people do not have.
Most of the houses that line the gulf are gone. Some houses remain but have significant damage and are surrounded by debris and rubble.
Miami Fire Search and Rescue team along with teams from around the country have come to Bay County to search for those who are missing or worse.
“Seeing that this is an area that we’re not too familiar with, we’ve separated into grids,” said Miami Fire Rescue Capt. Ignatius Carroll.
Officials could be seen going into buildings yelling “search and rescue” to alert anyone who may be inside during their quest.
They also work on tips and walk on unrecognizable streets, among unrecognizable homes. They also have search dogs with them.
The only hope for people who are lost or injured is the Task Force 2.
“These guys are great. It’s just been hard to get anybody in here,” said Mexico Beach resident Harry Phinizy.
Peggy Cauley, a resident in the area participating in the cleanup efforts, said she fears what may be found during the rescue missions.
“When we came in, there was a couple that were missing. They were asking if we knew them or anything about them,” said Cauley.
In at least one case, the fear for the worst was confirmed.
“We did find one deceased person. A lot of people choose not to leave, and as a result, a lot of people are somewhat unaccounted for right now, so we need to make sure we focus on them,” said Carroll.
While the search and rescue task forces continue to do their work, other departments like Sunrise Fire-Rescue and Tamarac Fire Rescue are helping to supplement the local fire departments.
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