PANAMA CITY, Fla. — The Panhandle community is still in disarray almost nine months after the hurricane.
“It’s an absolute disaster area,” said John Lincoln, a Bay County resident.
According to a recent survey by Rebuild 850, Florida residents in other parts of the state have no idea.
“People have forgotten about the fact that we were beaten up pretty bad by Hurricane Michael,” said Allan Bense, co-chair of Rebuild 850.
The survey says that almost three in five Floridians know that extensive damage is still present in the panhandle.
85 percent of those people are from Northwest Florida.
“They must be living under a rock,” said Lincoln.
The survey asked 1,000 Florida voters a series of questions related to the storm. Fewer than half of the participants were aware that Michael was a category five hurricane.
“People in Bay County were not prepared for a category five,” said Leoen Miller, a resident of Lynn Haven. “That’s why we are struggling right now.”
Nearly half of the respondents said that they are not willing to help meet the continuing needs in Northwest Florida.
“When the rest of the state over the years has been in trouble, I’m very proud to say the panhandle comes through,” said Bense. “Please help us. We help you, maybe it’s your turn to help us.”