News, Culture & Society

Hurricane Irma death toll hits four in Florida

  • Hurricane Irma has claimed the lives of four Florida residents, just hours after making landfall as a Category 4 storm in Cudjoe Key
  • A member of the Monroe Sheriff’s Office reports that there were two deaths in the county on Sunday
  • One man died after crashing into a tree in Key West, with the elderly gentleman holding a generator in his lap at the time to help him ride out the storm
  • The other man died overnight of natural causes while staying at a shelter set up on the same island
  • The other two victims, Julie Bridges and Joseph Ossman, were killed in a head-on car collision Sunday morning in Hardee County
  • Bridges, who has an 8-year-old son, is a Hardee County Sheriff’s Deputy and had been volunteering at a shelter for Irma victims at the time of the crash

Hurricane Irma has claimed the lives of four Florida residents, just hours after it made landfall in Cudjoe Key as a Category 4 storm.

Three of those deaths were the results of car accidents, with the first occurring in Monroe County when a man crashed his car into a tree while carrying a generator to prepare for the storm.

The other two victims were killed after being involved in a head-on crash early Sunday, which occurred in Hardee County.

Sheriff’s Deputy Julie Bridges was returning home after her night shift when she and Hardee Correctional Institute sergeant Joseph Ossman collided in the fatal accident.

Bridges, who is the mother of a young son, had been aiding victims at a local shelter that was set-up for the storm at the time of her death.

A fourth victim, whose name has not been released, appears to have died of natural causes that were brought on by the storm while spending Saturday night at a shelter in Key West.