Florida officials raise state's hurricane death toll to 16

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

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PANAMA CITY, Florida (AP) — Officials say 16 people died in Florida because of Hurricane Michael, doubling the numbers of deaths in the state The Associated Press had previously attributed to last week's storm.

Florida officials announced the state's updated death toll Tuesday. State officials did not provide details of how the victims' deaths were storm-related and the AP was not immediately able to confirm those details.

Officials say 12 of the deaths occurred in Bay County, a seaside county which took a direct hit from the storm.

The AP's tally also includes 10 deaths in Virginia, Georgia and North Carolina.

Meanwhile, Mexico Beach Mayor Al Cathey says two people are confirmed dead in the city that took a direct hit from ferocious Hurricane Michael.
Cathey said Tuesday that the dead were a man and a woman living in separate homes who did not evacuate.

He said the sheriff's office would release their names and the details of their deaths later.
The mayor says only one person in Mexico Beach is still missing. He says authorities are "almost certain" that person evacuated before Michael and just hasn't been contacted.

Cathey says officials are "holding steady at two (deaths) and don't expect that number to rise."

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