Drug overdoses among new challenges for hurricane shelters


Nearly 16,000 people in nine counties from Indian River to Miami-Dade evacuated to shelters during Hurricane Matthew, toting typical sleepover accessories — and their own personal demons.

Six evacuees who sought refuge at Atlantic High School in Delray Beach overdosed on drugs as the dangerous Category 4 cyclone approached South Florida.

In another county, a bus full of teenagers from a residential addiction-treatment center was left at an American Red Cross-run shelter without adult oversight.

“Many of the people from sober homes came with supervision, but some came and were just dropped off,” said Delray Beach Fire Rescue Capt. Kevin Saxton, who confirmed the six overdoses at Atlantic. “There were witnesses seeing people shoot up.”

Concerns about drug-related activity at shelters — and caring for people with other medical and mental health needs — were raised during the Governor’s Hurricane Conference last week in West Palm Beach.

Click here to read the full story from Kimberly Miller, The Post’s weather reporter.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Weather

As we enter peak hurricane season, it’s eerily quiet out there…
As we enter peak hurricane season, it’s eerily quiet out there…

Harvey was a harmless tropical storm and  Irma was still a breeze in Africa as peak hurricane season dawned a year ago in a pulsing  Atlantic basin set to detonate. Ten consecutive hurricanes, including six major storms, stained 2017 with devastating floods in Houston,  evacuation horrors in Florida...
Hurricane peak season: Tropics roared in ‘17; winds calmer now… so far
Hurricane peak season: Tropics roared in ‘17; winds calmer now… so far

Harvey was a harmless tropical storm and Irma was still a breeze in Africa as peak hurricane season dawned a year ago in a pulsing Atlantic basin set to detonate. Ten consecutive hurricanes, including six major storms, stained 2017 with devastating floods in Houston, evacuation horrors in Florida, and months of darkness in Puerto Rico...
NEW: Frustrated community told no easy fix for algae woes
NEW: Frustrated community told no easy fix for algae woes

A community filled Stuart City Hall on Friday, spilling into hallways where residents strained to hear what they hoped would be fast-track fixes for their algae-poisoned waterways. Many left disappointed, told instead during a 90-minute forum there are no silver bullets to mend a 70-year-old flood control system built to serve a population...
JUST IN: New hurricane center forecast for Invest 99L
JUST IN: New hurricane center forecast for Invest 99L

New area to watch in the tropics for possible development
New area to watch in the tropics for possible development

The National Hurricane Center is watching a new area in the tropical Atlantic, giving a tropical wave approaching the Caribbean a 20 percent chance of development over five days. The wave is about 750 miles east-southeast of the Windward Islands and is moving west-northwest at about 15 to 20 mph. Chances for development will wane over the...
More Stories