Eric Lynn, Michele Rayner work to clear debris in Pinellas County

eric lynn clears debris
While the area avoided the worst of the hurricane's path, it still saw tropical storm strength winds and significant rainfall, resulting in heaps of debris.

Congressional candidate Eric Lynn joined state Rep. Michele Rayner Friday to start clearing debris in St. Petersburg in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian.

The pair worked to clean up debris in St. Pete’s Childs Park neighborhood, and across Pinellas County. While the area avoided the worst of the hurricane’s path, it still saw tropical storm strength winds and significant rainfall, resulting in heaps of debris.

“I know the people of Pinellas will band together and make sure we do everything we can to recover from Hurricane Ian quickly and be prepared to help our neighbors who were hit harder,” Lynn said in a statement. “From Gulfport to Tarpon, we’re going to make sure everyone is back on their feet following the storm.”

“I also want to thank our local leaders here in the community — St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch, Clearwater Mayor Frank Hibbard, Representative Rayner, our County Commissioners, Governor (Ron) DeSantis, our first responders, and so many others who have all been essential in making sure our recovery efforts are efficient and effective,” he continued.

On Thursday, the City of St. Petersburg announced a citywide debris pickup in response to the hurricane. 

Starting on Monday, the city will start collecting debris from residential homes. Only green vegetation will be collected, and residents are asked to sort out any normal garbage or other construction materials from the vegetation.

The city offered the following details:

— Vegetation can be left on the edge of your property line, but do not block meters or stack vegetation against other items like trees or garbage cans.

— The city will collect debris from all houses and will follow normal sanitation routes.

— There is no need to call and report the need for a special sanitation pickup.

— Debris may not be picked on your first scheduled trash pickup date. Expect the process to take time as city crews work the entire city grid.

In addition to pickup by the city, residents can take debris to one of the city’s five brush sites, which will offer extended hours of 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. starting Friday.

The city of St. Pete released a preliminary report this morning on damage caused by Hurricane Ian, saying the storm appeared to cause no significant damage.

The city has received reports of numerous downed trees and power lines. Fire crews also reported a handful of fires that have been contained with minor damage and no injuries.

Push teams started to head out at daybreak to remove downed tree debris from main roadways and hospital access. The crews have been working all day to clear roads and restore power.

The city also announced that the St. Pete Pier, the Municipal Marina, the Albert Whitted Airport and The Coliseum will all reopen Friday. All city-run parks and rec facilities will reopen on Monday with normal programming and operating hours.

Kelly Hayes

Kelly Hayes studied journalism and political science at the University of Florida. Kelly was born and raised in Tampa Bay. A recent graduate, she enjoys government and legal reporting. She has experience covering the Florida Legislature as well as local government, and is a proud Alligator alum. You can reach Kelly at [email protected].


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