U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson says that Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida's Panhandle was destroyed, but he's promising the base will be rebuilt.
Nelson on Sunday visited the military base just days after Hurricane Michael tore across the region. The Florida Democrat said that older buildings on the base were demolished, while newer structures are in need of substantial repair. He also said that some of the hangars were damaged severely.
After Hurricane Andrew hit South Florida in 1992 an air force base in Homestead was closed due to substantial damage. But Nelson, who sits on the Senate Armed Forces Committee, said that fears that Tyndall will close are in his opinion "unfounded." He said that Tyndall is in a strategic location for its training missions.
The base was home to some of the nation's most advanced fighter jets but Nelson said he could not comment on how many planes were on the base during the storm or how many were damaged.
Thousands of people are likely to be without power in Florida's Panhandle for at least another week.
Gulf Power officials announced Sunday that they expect to have power restored to 95 percent of those hit by Hurricane Michael by Oct. 24 - or two weeks after the storm hit, leaving a trail of ruins across the region. Gulf Power is the main utility serving most of the area devastated by the deadly storm.
Some areas —such as Panama City Beach— will get power restored in the next two days. But the electric utility said it will take longer for downtown Panama City and other towns closer to where Michael roared onshore.
The NBC 6 First Alert Weather team guides you through hurricane season
Gulf Power head Stan Connally called Michael an "unprecedented storm." The utility has brought in thousands of utility workers from around the country to help with the restoration effort.
Currently, there are nearly 192,000 customers in Florida without electricity.
The White House says President Donald Trump plans to visit Florida and Georgia on Monday to survey damage caused by Hurricane Michael.
Trump will be accompanied by first lady Melania Trump. The White House isn't identifying areas the president will visit.