By Jan Bergemann

Published October 14, 2016

After Florida was left alone for more than 10 years by nasty hurricanes, hurricane “Matthew” paid a visit. South Florida was very lucky, since Matthew passed by on the Atlantic with quite some distance to the shore. But then it hit Brevard County and the North-East Coast of Florida. The hurricane more or less hugged the coast-line.

Quite a few people in that area didn’t take the warnings too seriously, after we had the weather folks on TV “crying wolf” over the last few years. And many of them paid the price for being unprepared.

But, as we have seen last week, there is absolutely nothing funny about a hurricane and warnings should be taken seriously. Once the hurricane is there, it’s too late to take precautions. I sat in my living-room while Matthew was raging outside and I watched my trees going crazy (since I have impact windows I had front-row seats). Half of my big oak tree in the front-yard came down – the same one I wanted to remove but didn’t get the necessary permit from the local county tree-hugger.  I guess that I can have the remains of the tree removed now?

MATTHEW was a huge hurricane and did serious damage in NE Florida. Firewood should be really inexpensive this year, considering all the fallen trees I saw on my way down South on Saturday.

There nothing anybody can do to prevent a hurricane from visiting Florida, but I think that the State of Florida is absolutely unprepared for a hurricane. It’s in my opinion plainly ridiculous that we have old, antiquated overland wires in a state that will be visited by hurricanes – the question is just: WHEN?

The storm hadn’t really reached Deland, and we had already lost electricity, cable, telephone and Internet. Obviously the old overland wires get scared when they are hearing that a hurricane is approaching. Honestly, I can understand that.

Our governor was busy giving press-conferences warning everybody that a serious hurricane is approaching, but these “politicians” do nothing to prepare the state for such events. In Germany there are no more overland wires since the rebuilding after WWII. They have serious winter storm reaching wind-speeds of 80-100 miles, regularly each year. The country is prepared! And after the storm you don’t have to deal in Germany with lengthy utility failures like here in Florida.

We all know the problems, but our legislators fail to do anything about it. They still allow matchbox-houses to be built – and they don’t force utility companies to build modern supply lines. Who cares about the citizens as long as the campaign funds are coming?

Make sure you heat hurricane warnings at all times. Prep your house and make sure your family is safe. Rather go through all the necessary preparation procedures one time too often than ignoring the warnings and paying the price. A HURRICANE IS NO JOKE!

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Jan Bergemann Jan Bergemann is president of Cyber Citizens For Justice, Florida 's largest state-wide property owners' advocacy group. CCFJ works on legislation to help owners living in community  

associations. He moved to Florida in 1995 - hoping to retire. He moved into a HOA, where the developer cheated the homeowners and used the association dues for his own purposes. End of retirement!


CCFJ was born in the year 2000, when some owners met in Tallahassee - finding out that power is only in numbers. Bergemann was a member of Governor Jeb Bush's HOA Task force in 2003/2004.


The organization has two websites to inform interested Florida homeowners and condo owners:

News Website:

Educational Website:

We think that only owners can really represent owners, since all service providers surely have a different interest! We are trying to create owner-friendly laws, but the best laws are useless without enforcement. And enforcement is totally lacking in Florida !

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