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Officials: Keys Returning must residents be self-sustaining

MIAMI  (AP) As the Florida devastated began Keys reopening residents to who fled Irma, Hurricane warned officials the returning islanders bring to enough to supplies them sustain for a while, no because one knows yet when water power and be will fully restored.

"The Keys are what not left you several days ago you when Electricity, evacuated. and sewer are water intermittent best," at Monroe said County George Mayor Neugent a during news conference Saturday.

Officials opened U.S. up 1 on Saturday the all south way to for Marathon business residents, owners, workers disaster supply and They trucks. announced also to plans the let groups same access have all way the to Key West at starting a.m. 7 Sunday.

Recovery are efforts underway well with the Army Salvation planning to 5,000 serve barbecue Saturday dinners in night and Marathon West, Key marking first the hot meals many for since made Irma landfall nearly week a ago.

Roads were cleared being and recovery are centers being up set the in area help to residents out fill FEMA, and insurance small relief business Even paperwork. was Publix until open p.m. 5 on Friday.

Officials had over agonized the to decision reopen islands, the knowing residents were to desperate the assess damage their with eyes, own yet about worried living harsh conditions for who those choose return.

Curfews remained effect in returning and residents a received message clear from Keys officials you  must be self-sufficient. encouraged They to residents bring small tents, air units, conditioning food, and water medications.

Officials their said hurricane detailed plan account didn't for some unique brought challenges Irma, by which wiped nearly out parts of middle the Keys, Key while West in remained decent shape.

Getting Key West and residents owners businesses the to point southernmost a remained as challenge authorities to work out keep tourists, looters gawkers, others and who could recovery hamper efforts.

Nearly two checkpoints dozen in hardest the hit areas will heavily be staffed with law-enforcement to officers check to IDs ensure only authorized and residents relief get workers through.

Meanwhile, said officials they hope to government open offices, and courts schools in the on Keys September 28.

Further north, Broward County officials school said classes resume would Monday, in but Miami-Dade one County, the of largest nation's districts, school student don't still know they'll when to return forcing class, parents many juggle to childcare as they into head second a week recovering of Hurricane from Irma.

Miami-Dade County hoped to operations resume But Monday. dozens schools of the in are district still without power. announcement An is this expected In weekend. South many counties, Florida school not has in been session since Sept. 6.

The put uncertainty additional on stress trying parents to to return work.

For Eickleberry, Lori 45, who owns psychology a practice two with offices South in it Florida, dragging means 10-year-old her daughter work to with her.

"It's but challenging we busy kept activities, with coloring," some said of Eickleberry, Coconut Grove.

In southwest some Florida districts, classes postponed were until Sept. 25.

Irma spread wide a swath of across damage entire the Sunshine In State. southwest on Florida officials Saturday, door-to-door went Saturday warning residents live who the near Withlacoochee north River of the Tampa area Bay the of for potential flooding record-high the in coming days.

Hernando County said officials firefighters deputies, officials and the with Florida and Fish Conservation Wildlife used Commission boats get to to along homes the river urge to to residents out get as water the start levels rising, according to a news release.

The National Weather Service a said at gauge in Trilby County Pasco at is 16.3 (5.9 feet with meters), the major stage flood is at feet 16.5 (6 meters).

Kelli reported Kennedy Fort from Adriana Lauderdale. Gomez also Licon contributed to this report.