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(1) force = violence?
(2)covered in mud -- I didn't get it. "Cover in" is an idiom which means "to use (mud) to stuff (a hole)". So "covered in mud" means "to stuff (a hole) with mud"?
(3) ALONG U.S. 17
17?

Context:
Storms course force, catch many Floridians unprepared
By Michael McCarthy, USA TODAY
ALONG U.S. 17 IN SOUTHWEST FLORIDA — Covered in mud, stepping carefully through the wreckage, Norma Kradecki surveys the site of her home of 25 years.
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Sorry I missed the headline itself, Jobb. Seems to me there's punctuation missing:

"STORM'S COURSE, FORCE CATCH MANY FLORIDIANS UNPREPARED",

which would translate as: "The storm caught many unprepared because the hurricane suddenly changed course and was unexpectedly strong."
Comments  
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
covered with mud does not mean a hole stuffed with mud.

when something is 'covered with' any substance, it means that the object's surface has a thick coating of the substance. I can't think of any contexts where 'covered with' would refer to an internal coating, such as the inside of a hole being filled up,

In this case, the poor woman had a thick coating of mud! Probably only her feet and legs, but it could mean her entire body I suppose. People who go to one particular British music festival sometimes get 'covered with mud' completely by just giving up and rolling around in the stuff after heavy rain, and photographs of these mud-monsters appear in all the papers!
Your translation is very clear. Do you mean "STORM'S COURSE, and storm's FORCE CATCH MANY FLORIDIANS UNPREPARED" ?
Yes. And sorry for missing your other questions-- I didn't notice them:

(2) Already answered by an alert guest.

(3) 'U.S. 17' is 'United States Highway Number 17', one of many national highways that crisscross the country, in addition to the interstate freeway system, state highways, and local roads.
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
If a paint barrel in a falsework fell to the ground as you were passing by, you might cover in paint all over. But if what was in the barrel was mud, you might cover in mud!

And thanks to Mr.Micawber!