A week after the tornado continued to clear in neighborhoods south of Fort Myers


It’s been a week since an EF1 tornado ripped through areas south of Fort Myers, causing damage in the communities of Briarcliff and Eagle Ridge.

The cleanup was slow but steady.

Rob Outkerk struggled a week ago to free his home from the clutches of a tree.

Now, the tree is no longer his home and all the trees have disappeared from his lawn.

“Every time we have a tornado or a storm, these branches come flying,” says Outkerk.

There’s still a lot of work to be done.

Outkerk needs to pay for a new lanai.

“The pool cage was completely shot,” he said.

And he still needs to fix up his roof and figure out where some of the arrangements are going.

“I don’t know where it came from,” he said. “Landing in my yard.”

Outkerk’s neighbors have work to do, too.

Roofers, screen repairmen and masons have lined up at Twin Eagle Lane for the past seven days.

Blue tarps cover a lot of homes and a lot of people, like Outkerks, have yet to hear the news of their insurance.

“It was frustrating all week,” says Outkerk, because you have so much to do and so much to do.

On Twin Eagle Lanes, Marvin Swosinski had very few sticks left and a lot of work to do.

“It hasn’t changed,” Swosinski said. “You know, just cleaning up a lot, branches, branches, you name it.”

The cleaning was annoying. Repair cost? For some, perhaps high.

But in the Eagle Ridge community, people and pets are finding a bright side.

Nancy Crook’s dog Toby loves tree branches.

“He loves trees, leaves and anything else on the ground,” says Crook.

She still needs a new lanai monitor and shingles.

“You know what it’s like to get tiles these days,” says Crook.

But today, these neighbors know that things could be worse when they think about the damage done in Kentucky.

“People are helping each other, that’s the best part of the neighborhood when there was damage,” Crook said.

Lee County Solid Waste is asking tornado-affected residents to note the following tips for effective debris removal:


Note: Damaged pool cages will fall under the same “Fence (Wood)” treatment as shown above.

Residents with questions about waste collection can contact Solid Waste Customer Service at (239) 533-8000 or visit the website at

NOTE: Holiday/Closed Hours

Neighborhood Collection: There will be NO CHANGE to the Christmas or New Year’s neighborhood collection schedule as both holidays fall on a Saturday this year. Please place your trash, yard waste, and curbside recycling on your regular collection day.

Copyright 2021 Fort Myers Broadcasting Company. Copyright Registered. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without prior written consent. A week after the tornado continued to clear in neighborhoods south of Fort Myers

Aila Slisco

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