In South Florida, Florida Power & Light said that at 2 p.m. it had yet to restore power to 7,000 customers in Miami-Dade County, 2,730 in Broward and 2,600 in Palm Beach.
FPL said crews had been out since Sunday, although high winds and rain made some repairs difficult. “A lot of people get misled by not seeing a truck in their neighborhood,’’ said spokesman Richard Gibbs. “I can tell you there are a ton of people working behind the scenes to get power restored.”
The work was complicated Monday by powerful squalls that pounded Southeast Florida from the far-off storm.
The flooding was widespread but worst in western Palm Beach County neighborhoods such as The Acreage and Wellington, where roads and yards were reported underwater. The South Florida Water Management District reported pumping a record volume out of the C-51 canal there — 9,600 cubic feet of water per second, enough to fill an Olympic pool every 10 seconds.
Monday’s rains came on top of the wettest 24 hours for the district since Hurricane Mitch in 1998, said spokesman Gabe Margasak. From Sunday to Monday morning, Isaac dumped an average of nearly 3.5 inches across South Florida, with many areas seeing far more. The National Weather Service recorded 13 inches in Greenacres in western Palm Beach, nearly 11 in Miramar, 8.5 in Fort Lauderdale just over 8 inches at Homestead Air Force Base.
Although Isaac’s core was forecast to miss Florida, Gov. Rick Scott told state delegates at a breakfast meeting at Innisbrook Resort and Spa in Palm Harbor near Tampa that he was still worried about the Panhandle because of a soaking from Tropical Storm Debby in June.
“Our risk right now is the Panhandle,” Scott said. “It is drenched already.”
Not everyone in Pensacola seemed worried.
Clay Boyington, a 50-year-old service boat captain, spent Monday afternoon at The Oar House, a chickee-hut-style watering hole on a marshy inlet known as Bayou Chico.
As the storm clouds began to build, Boyington sipped a vodka-and-cranberry and stared out onto the Bahia Mar Marina, where he docks the 44-foot Sea Ray pleasure boat that serves as his home.
If he had his way, he said, he’d ride it out on the boat.
“It’s a really good hurricane hole,” he said, of Bayou Chico. “It’s protected from the winds and the waves can’t build up. Two big anchors and I’d be fine.”
That wasn’t an option. The marina had issued a mandatory evacuation, and Boyington was paying $440 to have his boat hauled out of the water.
“I’m spending a lot of money to make myself homeless,” he said.
Miami Herald staff writers Daniel Chang, Cammy Clark, Hannah Sampson, Christina Veiga, Laura Isensee, Lazaro Gamio, Susan Cocking, Kathleen McGrory and Jacqueline Charles in Haiti contributed to this report