Watch live: President Biden visits Florida to survey damage from Hurricane Ian | USA Today

President Biden recommits to supporting the people of Florida as they recover and rebuild from Hurricane Ian.
RELATED: Florida’s River Park neighborhood, ‘we’re not top priority’

Water levels kept rising in some flooded areas of Florida, inundating homes and streets that were passable a day or two earlier. Notices advising that water for human consumption be boiled were issued to at least parts of 23 counties.

Over 4,000 people have been rescued by local, state and federal authorities, FEMA and U.S. Coast Guard officials said.

“There’s more urban search and rescue teams in Florida now than in any one place in American history since Sept. 11,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said.

A large percentage of those rescued rode out the storm on barrier islands – and Sanibel and Pine islands were rendered inaccessible by land. Parts of the causeway to Sanibel collapsed, and the bridge to Pine, the largest barrier island off Florida’s Gulf Coast, was destroyed by the storm. Some residents were evacuated by helicopter.

“The water just kept pounding the house and we watched boats, houses – we watched everything just go flying by,” resident Joe Conforti said. “When the water’s at your door, and it’s splashing on the door and you’re seeing how fast it’s moving, there’s no way you’re going to survive that.”

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