JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A northside apartment complex that has been without power for a week is expected to get its power back Thursday.
A fire ripped through part of Island Pointe Apartments last week, but the power outage wasn't because of the fire. The apartments are along the river and flooding during Nicole led JEA to remove 50 electrical meters for safety, according to Greg Corcoran, JEA's manager of community involvement and project outreach.
JEA trucks were in the area Thursday morning and Corcoran says they're waiting for the go-ahead from the electrician and safety inspector that it's safe to turn the power back on.
Residents like Mike Foster are ready. He says it's been hard depending on other people and frustrating not being able to have his children at his apartment. He says he's also been thinking about the older couple that lives below him.
"I had just bought like $50 worth of food, all that went bad," Foster said. "Can't wash my clothes and I just got to kind of depend on somebody else in a way. I need somewhere to sleep. I can't sleep in there if there ain't no lights and it's been cold for the last few days."
The apartment complex manager told First Coast News over the phone residents with questions about rent should call their office.
First Coast News asked Corcoran why getting the power back on has taken so long. Here's his reply:
"The big biggest thing is safety, right?" Corcoran said. "We want to make sure that all of these buildings are safe for the residents that are in there. So in this situation, you want to make sure that a certified electrician comes in and looks at each building to make sure that it's safe for people to return. So until the electrician finishes his work, the city can't clear the permits and JEA can't restore power."
First Coast News asked if this meant the electrician was like taking a while.
"We don't know exactly what repairs needed to happen for that to occur," Corcoran replied. "So that can take a fair bit of time. We'd have to talk to them about that. But certainly we are ready to restore service when they're available to accept it."
First Coast News also brought this question to the apartment manager. They said the permitting part took a while due to an address issue with the city, but that they had an electrician restore power to apartments Saturday that did not have electric meters taken off.
As for the fire, the state fire marshal's office did not have an answer for what caused it, stating only that the investigation is "open and ongoing."