9 months later, Old A1A is still gone after Hurricane Matthew

You have to use a 4-wheel drive vehicle just to get up and down the road, still not repaired more than 9 months after the storm

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. - Nine months ago, Hurricane Matthew washed away Old A1A. Today, there still isn't a road, but rather a sandy path that requires four-wheel drive.

At Old A1A, authorities have put up a rope and several warning signs to drivers about the sandy road conditions. The signs read "You will get stuck."

After Hurricane Matthew passed the area in October of last year, chunks of Old A1A remained, but those chunks sit in piles up and down the stretch.

First Coast News was told that about 30 people still live down the road. Many of them say they have difficulty getting to and from their homes, like Judson Conner who built his house in the 1980s.

That's because hurricane Matthew swept away the paved road, leaving only a path in the sand.

Chunks of old A1A are still there, and now those chunks just sit in piles up and down this stretch.

"The hurricane washed out the entire road," Conner said. "It put 70 feet of sand behind the house." Conner said that sand used to be dunes on the beach. 

Conner hasn't been able to stay in his house since the storm in October.

"I couldn't get in here. Couldn't get in here. Yep," he nodded. "You can't even get to the house without 4-wheel drive"

Conner just got a truck so he can make the drive.

Old A1A is a county road. Conner and his neighbors have been waiting for the county to not just repair it, but make it again.

"The county voted last week to apply to FEMA for the money. As you know FEMA pays 75 percent, the state pays 12.5 percent, the county pays 12.5 percent. So they tell us it's in FEMA's hands now," Conner said. 

It would cost millions and the county says it is waiting on federal and state money.

But people here like Conner can't believe it's been nine months since the storm hit, and they still don't have a road to access their homes.

"They're working on it, that's what they say," Conner said. "Their philosophy is not my philosophy."

© 2017 WTLV-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment