Nearly every part of Florida was affected by Hurricane Irma, including rural Highlands County, where more than 80 percent of the roughly 100,000 residents on Thursday remained without power and a curfew remains in effect.
The staff at the Highlands News-Sun saw their building in Sebring damaged, but they've continued to publish throughout the storm online, on Facebook and in print. On Thursday, the newsroom was sharing regular updates about distribution sites providing water and military rations – or MRES.
Locations ran out of both at times during the day, said editor Ramona Washington.
“People are lined up to get whatever they possibly can to help them through this,” she said.
Washington said the news staff is operating out of a conference room of a nearby business. Advertising and business teams are working in other locations. Together, they’re delivering the newspaper to the entire community, including people who aren’t subscribers.
The Highlands County Sheriff's Office said a curfew remains in effect, starting at 6 p.m.