Lincoln, R.I. native evacuates University of Tampa ahead of Hurricane Irma

Eyewitness News reporter Eric Halperin speaks with former intern Fallon Fischer via FaceTime during Hurricane Irma. (9/10/17)

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Lincoln native Fallon Fischer is a former Eyewitness News intern who is now in the beginning of her junior year at the University of Tampa. She’s since evacuated the area. It’s not at all how she thought she’d be starting her third year of college.

Hurricane Irma ripped through Tampa on Sunday. Eyewitness News talked with Fischer on FaceTime Sunday night. She’s been seeing the video of the storm tearing through town where some of her friends are still on campus.

“It breaks my heart because I just want them to be safe and it makes me worried but I know they’re in good hands at the school and the school has done the most they can to help the students,” she said.


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he says Tampa is no stranger to flooding but expects the worst with this storm. She added that some of the dorms are right near the water and that those have been evacuated. She drove up to her aunt’s house in northern Florida on Wednesday. The storm isn’t expected to hit as hard there. But even with the weaker parts of the storm, the pool which they partially drained in preparation, has flooded.

“It has already overflowed and now the backyard is like a huge puddle,” said Fischer.

In her time as a student in Tampa she says classes have never been canceled for a storm until now. They’re supposed to resume on Thursday but that could change depending on the damage Hurricane Irma leaves behind.

“I’m not even sure if that’s going to happen depending on how bad the storm hits and how bad Tampa floods because like I said, Tampa floods and we are right on the bay,” she said.

Millions in Florida lost power due to Hurricane Irma. Fischer’s family’s house still had it at the time of the interview. But she expected it to go out during some point in the storm.