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Florida Faces Massive Cleanup

Storm-weary Florida residents were left with flooding, frayed nerves and shortages of everyday items such as gas, ice and water in the wake of Hurricane Frances. At least 9 storm-related deaths — four in Florida and five in Georgia — were blamed on the storm.

About 3 million people had no power in Florida and half a million customers in Georgia were without electricity because of winds that downed trees and power lines.

"If you have not operated a chainsaw before, now is not the time to do that," warned Florida Secretary for Community Affairs Thaddeus Cohen.

"Even our state operations center is running on a generator now," Georgia emergency management spokeswoman Lisa Ray told CBS Radio News. "Over 65 counties in south and central Georgia have canceled school for the day."

The storm, now a tropical depression, was pouring up to 5 inches of rain on south-central Georgia, with another 2 to 4 inches possible overnight. Several tornadoes were reported in Georgia.

"This is now going to be a big-time rain event, first today in the southern and central Appalachians, and then probably later tomorrow throughout much of the Northeast," said CBS News Meteorologist George Cullen.

Meanwhile, as Frances headed out of Florida, residents kept a wary eye on another powerful storm. Ivan, the fifth hurricane of the year, had sustained wind of near 110 mph and was centered 140 miles south-southeast of Barbados in the central Atlantic.

"We are closely monitoring the situation and it has me concerned, and I'm sure the folks at the Hurricane Center share that concern for the state of Florida at this point," said state meteorologist Ben Nelson.

Forecasters were not certain whether it would strike the United States, but after a month of damage from Hurricanes Frances and Charley, many Floridians loathed another impending storm.

"We need it like we need a hole in the head," said 93-year-old Harold Samsel of Hutchinson Island, who was waiting to go back to his apartment for the first time since Frances. "I don't even know if I've got anything to go back to."

Thousands in both states lack essential services following Frances.

"No milk to be found anywhere, power's out everywhere, just doing the best we can," Merritt Island, Ga., resident Sherri DeLong, told CBS News Correspondent Peter King.

"We're getting wind gusts and heavy rain, but when we look at our neighbors in Florida, we certainly have nothing to complain about," said Ray.

The storm caused flooding in parts of Tampa, forcing police to patrol streets with two amphibious tanks and close about a mile of a busy thoroughfare. More than 100 residents of a retirement home were evacuated in wheelchairs as floodwaters sloshed against their feet.

"I'm not scared," said Heather Downs, who moved into the home two weeks ago after her apartment was badly damaged by Hurricane Charley. "I've been through a lot."

Along the Atlantic coast, motorists waited for gasoline in lines stretching up to five miles while there was heavy demand for water, ice and basic supplies. About 1,500 people gathered at a Wal-Mart in Palm Beach County while up the coast in Fort Pierce, hundreds of people stood in a line with buckets and ice chests on a sunny, steamy afternoon.

"This has been a long haul," said 64-year-old Judy Duffy, of Fort Pierce, who searched with her husband for ice and water but drove away from a distribution line with an empty cooler. "It's tested my patience. I'm not a nice person today — I haven't had my coffee."

At a Florida Turnpike rest stop in West Palm Beach, a five-mile line of motorists waited for fuel. "It took a little while, but I'm glad to be here," said Greg McCourt, who waited an hour to get gas for a trip to Georgia.

There were at least 25 arrests for looting in Florida.

Frances charged into Florida's east coast early Sunday with winds of 115 mph and more than 13 inches of rain, ripping off roofs, smashing boats and flooding West Palm Beach streets up to four feet deep.

Hurricane Frances battered the Kennedy Space Center with sustained winds of more than 70 mph, reports CBS News Space Consultant Bill Harwood, ripping off an estimated 40,000 square feet of siding on the cavernous Vehicle Assembly Building and partially destroying the roof of a critical heat shield tile facility needed for NASA's shuttle return to flight effort.

Recovering from the impact of Frances could delay NASA's first post-Columbia shuttle flight, now targeted for March, officials said. But center director Jim Kennedy said the damage, while the worst in spaceport history, was not a disaster "by any stretch of the imagination" and that it was too soon to say what impact it might have on the agency's return-to-flight efforts.

The storm's broad bands pushed across Florida to enter the gulf north of Tampa, its path crossing some of the area hit by Charley, which killed 27 people in Florida last month and caused an estimated $7.4 billion in insured damage.

Florida Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher estimated Frances' damage at up to "a couple of billion dollars," while Germany's Munich Re, the world's largest reinsurer, said the overall insured damage caused by Frances so far is between $5 billion and $15 billion.

President Bush on Wednesday will travel to Florida — a state essential to his re-election bid — to survey the damage inflicted by Frances, reports CBS News White House Correspondent Mark Knoller.

Some schools were planning for classes to resume after serving as shelters during the weekend. The Federal Emergency Management Agency was ready to distribute 1.5 million gallons of water and 1 million meals.

By midmorning, rain was falling across Georgia and South Carolina, and parts of North Carolina, Alabama, northern Florida, eastern Tennessee and southeastern Kentucky.

Alabama's strongest storms were in its mountainous northeast corner, where Vanessa Fike said it was difficult walking because of winds gusting to about 30 mph.

"There was a little kid walking outside a little while ago and it looked like he was about to blow over," said Fike, who works at the DeSoto State Park lodge in Fort Payne. "It's still a far cry from what they had in Florida, so I'm not complaining."