TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis issued updates on Hurricane Ian after surveying various impacted areas and meeting with impacted communities. Governor DeSantis traveled to Waffle House in Punta Gorda to serve food and meet with first responders, emergency response staff and volunteers. The Governor also traveled to Fort Myers to visit points of distribution for Floridians impacted by Hurricane Ian.
Today, the Governor announced that 30 Starlink units have been deployed to Lee and Charlotte Counties to help residents communicate once they check into established points of distribution in these counties, in addition to 10 smaller Starlink units for Emergency Operations Centers and first responders to use to communicate in the field. There are currently 42,000 linemen responding to the more than 1.2 million reported power outages. They have already restored power to more than 1.4 million accounts across the state.
The state website for reporting missing persons related to Hurricane Ian is http://missing.fl.gov. If you need to report a missing person, fill out the form on behalf of “Someone Else.” You can also fill out the form on behalf of yourself if communications are limited. Safe and found persons can be reported safe at http://safe.fl.gov.
First Lady Casey DeSantis announced the first awards from the Florida Disaster Fund, to read more info, click here. The Florida Disaster Fund is the State of Florida’s official private fund established to provide financial assistance to our communities as they respond to and recover from times of emergency or disaster. In partnership with public, private, and other non-governmental organizations, the Florida Disaster Fund supports response and recovery activities. To contribute, please visit www.FloridaDisasterFund.org or text DISASTER to 20222.
State preparation and response efforts include:
Search and Rescue
  • As of 7 a.m. this morning, more than 1,100 rescues have been made.
  • There are more than 1,000 team members performing search and rescue.
  • Florida National Guard members are conducting Liaison missions in 14 counties to support and coordinate emergency response missions and requests in those counties.
  • Florida National Guard engineering resources were deployed to assist with route clearance in Pinellas and Lee Counties.
  • The Missouri Task Force 1 Disaster Situational Assessment and Reconnaissance (DSAR) Team is deploying to Florida through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact to support urban search and rescue efforts and incident assessment.
  • Florida National Guard began executing search and rescue (SAR) missions in support of local authorities, to recover distressed civilians throughout southwest and central Florida, including 1,076 civilians rescued and evacuated from flooded areas, two hoist rescues, 78 civilians transported from flooded elderly care facility, and a total of 178 rotary wing rescues.
  • A Florida Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Team deployed to Central Florida to support state USAR Task Forces and incident assessment.
  • The National Guard and the Coast Guard are landing helicopters on barrier islands to perform search and rescue.
  • Following Governor DeSantis’ authorization, a total of 5,000 Florida Guardsmen have been activated to State Active Duty for Hurricane Ian response operations. Up to 2,000 Guardsmen from neighboring states are also activated to assist. The Florida National Guard are supporting a total of 152 active missions.
Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM)
  • FDEM is identifying locations and resource needs for Points of Distribution (POD) in Charlotte, Hardee, Highlands, Lee, Okeechobee and Sarasota counties. 200 trucks of food, water and ice are currently en route to provide meals ready-to-eat (MREs) and bottled water to impacted residents.
  • Through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC), more than 1,800 personnel from 26 states have deployed to Florida to assist in response and recovery efforts. PODs currently being mobilized include:
  • 7 in Lee County
  • 3 in Highlands County
  • 6 in Sarasota County
  • 4 in Collier County
  • 2 in Charlotte County
  • 1 in Hardee County
  • FDEM is working with feeding partners to open kitchens for impacted and displaced residents. More than 63,000 hot meals were served on-scene at food banks in Alachua, Brevard, Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Flagler, Hardee, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Orange, Pinellas, Polk, Sarasota, Seminole and Union counties yesterday, Friday, September 30. More than 100,000 hot meals will be served today, October 1.
  • FDEM has activated the State Assistance Information Line (SAIL) to provide an additional resource for Floridians to receive up-to-date information regarding Hurricane Ian. Residents and visitors can call this toll-free hotline at 1-800-342-3557.
  • FDEM Recovery staff are conducting rapid damage assessments in Polk, Sarasota, Collier and Manatee counties to expedite available federal assistance for disaster recovery.
  • FDEM has six active fuel depots and is staging an additional four fuel depots today throughout Central and Southwest Florida to ensure first responders have the fuel they need to conduct search and rescue operations.More than 1.2 million gallons of fuels has been mobilized.
  • FDEM Liaisons have been deployed to county EOCs in Brevard, Charlotte, Dixie, Hardee, Hillsborough, Lee, Pinellas, Sarasota and Seminole counties.
  • At the direction of FDEM Director and State Coordinating Officer Kevin Guthrie, Incident Management Teams (IMT) from Ohio and Colorado are on-scene to ensure additional support for response and recovery efforts after the storm.
  • FDEM is deploying several hundred shelter support staff to address staffing needs in counties that have opened their Special Needs hurricane shelters. Currently, more than 200 public shelters are open and available to impacted residents, with more than 50 of these being Special Needs Shelters.
  • FDEM is leading the State Emergency Response Team (SERT) for the Hurricane Ian response, with more than 350 SERT members staffing the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC).
  • FDEM has received more than 2,700 resource requests for Hurricane Ian and fulfilled. Over 2,300 of these requests are currently being processed and are either en route or being mobilized. This includes the coordination of resources such as: trucks of food and water, generators and water pumps.
  • FDEM is mobilizing pet food and supplies for displaced pets in Charlotte County, including: dry and canned dog food, dry and canned cat food, cat litter, disposable pet bowls and disposable leashes.
  • FDEM is deploying the following resources for distribution to impacted areas:
    • More than 4,000 gallons of diesel to Lee County to power water plants that provide water to nearby hospitals
    • Drone teams to assess flooded areas
    • 500 traffic barrels to Charlotte County to safely modify traffic patterns
    • More than 400 bottles of oxygen to Charlotte County.
    • 255 ambulances
    • 200 trucks of food, water and ice
    • 200 large generators
    • 2 full service mechanical shops
    • 500,000 tarps
    • 375 kits for parents of infants and toddlers with critical supplies that will last for 10 days each
    • Four mobile triage units to Miami-Dade County
    • Five truckloads of blankets and five truckloads of cots to support displaced residents
    • FDEM is currently coordinating the provision of meals for first responders staged in Orange County.
  • FDEM is in constant communication with all 67 county emergency management offices and state agencies to coordinate recovery actions and needed resources as communities experience storm impacts.
  • There are currently 1.6 million people without power.
  • More than 1.4 million accounts have already been restored across Florida.
  • For a full report on current outages, click here.
  • 42,000 linemen from utilities across the state are working 24/7 to restore power.
  • 325 Florida Highway Patrol are transporting utility crews.
Health and Human Services
  • Since Hurricane Ian made landfall, 642 patients were evacuated from 6 health care facilities in Charlotte, Lee, Sarasota, Orange, and Volusia County. These facilities cannot safely operate while sustaining critical damage to their infrastructure from Hurricane Ian.
  • Visits are being conducted at all health care facilities in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian. As of this morning, we have completed 76 assessments at facilities in Collier, Lee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Hardee, and Desoto county.
  • Secretary Simone Marstiller has signed Emergency Order 22-002 extending the deadline for the submission of letters of agreement required for the Supplemental payment programs, this can be found here.
  • To support hospitals in Lee County without potable water, Florida is shuttling 1.2 million gallons of water on 20 trucks from Lakeland to Fort Myers.
  • DOH has partnered with Volunteer Florida to develop an online portal for health care practitioners who wish to volunteer their expertise, skills, and experience in areas impacted by Hurricane Ian.
  • Boil Water Notices have been issued for 99 areas, over 20 counties, following the impacts from Hurricane Ian. DOH continues to monitor and maintain a comprehensive statewide list of notices for residents to access online.
  • AHCA has activated reporting in the Health Facility Reporting System (HFRS) and is requesting all health care providers report their census, available beds, evacuation status and generator status information. This information allows AHCA to assist health care providers in transferring patients if needed and ensure health care providers in impacted areas have the necessary resources and adequate power.
  • DOH and AHCA’s Patient Movement Mission has evacuated roughly 8,500 patients from 200 health care facilities in areas of Hurricane Ian’s path. The Department continues to assess and support any additional necessary evacuations.
  • This mission also supports the evacuation of nearly 9,000 patients and residents from more than 200 health care facilities.
  • Nearly 400 ambulances, paratransit busses, and support vehicles are responding to areas of anticipated landfall.
  • The Agency sent a Medicaid Provider Alert outlining Key Medicaid Information for Fee-For-Service and Managed Care Providers during Hurricane Ian, this can be found here.
  • AHCA has activated the Emergency Patient Look-Up System (E-PLUS).  Special needs shelters for 16 counties are able to utilize the system to retrieve patient medical records. E-PLUS is also available to assist medical providers and emergency response personnel with locating missing or displaced persons after the storm.
  • The State Surgeon General has signed a letter to allow staff of the Department and Agency for Health Care Administration to travel past curfews across state lines to conduct any necessary health and safety actions, this can be found here.
  • AHCA has identified Home Medical Equipment providers that can assist with supplying oxygen supplies to Special Needs Shelters.
  • As of today, 100% of operating long-term care facilities have a generator on-site. The Generator Status Map for long-term care facilities is available here.
  • The state has been monitoring several healthcare facilities on generator power, two healthcare facilities are in the process of evacuating.
  • 400 additional nurses are moving into southwest Florida to assist.
  • 287 health care facilities have had power restored since the onset of the event.
  • Secretary Simone Marstiller has signed Emergency Order 22-001 suspending statutes or rules pertaining to level 2 background screening made necessary by Hurricane Ian. This allows health care facilities to deploy out of state health care workers to the same roles in Florida during the emergency. This can be found here.
  • APD is reaching out to the Qualified Organizations in the impacted areas to ensure the health and safety of Waiver Support Coordinators and clients.
  • APD is gathering unmet needs information from partner organizations and providers and working with the proper authorities to resolve the issues.
  • 50 APD-licensed group homes that originally evacuated have returned back to their homes. 50 APD-licensed group homes remain evacuated.
  • The APD Suncoast Region has checked on the health and safety of 700 clients who live independently.
  • DOEA CARES Assessors are being deployed to serve in special needs shelters as requested through the Emergency Operations Center.
  • The Office of Public and Professional Guardians is checking in with public guardian offices to ensure wards are safe and needs are met.
  • Local agencies are assessing needs and impacts on the senior population served by the Department.
  • Agencies from unaffected areas are identifying staff that can be deployed to impacted areas.
  • All providers in Pasco-Pinellas county expect to be fully functioning on Monday.
  • Senior Connection Center provider in Hardee and Highlands County is working with the Emergency Operations Center to get food and water to distribute to seniors in their counties.
  • All providers in Miami-Dade and Monroe counties expect to be fully operational by Monday.
  • The Elder Helpline, 1-800-96-ELDER, is still active during business hours, and after hours/weekend calls are being returned the following business day. Seniors may call for assistance with non-emergency needs.
  • Some Area Agency on Aging for Southwest Florida service providers and staff are without power and still assessing operability to reopen services in Sarasota, Collier, and Glades counties.
  • Several thousand shelf stable meals will be delivered this weekend to Pasco and Pinellas county for seniors; currently assessing needs with SW Florida for additional meals.
  • The Bay Pines VA Healthcare System will offer Mental Health and Primary Care services on Saturday, Oct. 1 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on a walk-in basis only:
    • C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center (VAMC)
    • North Pinellas VA Clinic
    • Bradenton VA Clinic
    • Sarasota VA Clinic
    • Petersburg VA Clinic
  • The Sebring VA Clinic will also be open for walk-ins only on Saturday, Oct. 1 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. However, they will only offer Primary Care services.
  • The Lee County Healthcare Center, as well as the Naples and Port Charlotte VA clinics, will remain closed until further notice. Those U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs clinics sustained significant damage from the hurricane and, as a result, may remain closed longer than initially anticipated. Staff will continue working diligently to assess the impact at all our locations and safely restore our operations.
  • The VA Outpatient Clinic in Daytona Beach will also remain closed until further notice.
  • If you have a medical emergency, and cannot reach one of the open locations, please call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest open emergency room. For non-urgent medical care, please contact the VISN 8 Clinical Contact Center at 1-877-741-3400.
  • DOH has deployed 5 teams of 2 to conduct nursing home facility assessments, in support of AHCA, to Lee, Charlotte, Collier, and Sarasota counties. Lee county assessments were completed on Thursday. The assessments for the remaining facilities are ongoing.
  • DOH is assessing its programs and community resources such as WIC, Healthy Start, and pharmacy operations to ensure continued access to critical health-related services.
  • DOH’s Healthy Start Coalitions are working with county health departments and county emergency managers to assist with any infant formula needs in impacted communities.
  • Alternative solutions for powdered formulas are being implemented, which may include pre-mixed formulas or supplemental drinking water in addition to powdered formulas.
  • DOH is monitoring emergency department data for priority health conditions that may need additional public health response and public messaging in impacted areas. Priority health conditions include carbon monoxide poisonings, injuries, gastrointestinal illnesses, animal/insect bites, respiratory complications, and mental health.
  • The Regional Poison Control Centers, 1-800-222-1222, remain available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assess, triage, and manage poison information and exposure calls. DOH continues to monitor calls to assess where additional support is needed.
  • DOH has deployed health advisories and resources to assist the public in identifying potential hazards that may be present following the aftermath of Hurricane Ian. Resources have been distributed to local communities and are available through social media channels and online.
  • DOH is supporting local 911 dispatch efforts by providing an additional 40 ambulances to local emergency county EMS providers.
  • The State Surgeon General signed Emergency Order 22-004 authorizing licensed health care professionals in good standing from out of state to practice in Florida for the duration of the EO. These professionals include: Physicians, Osteopathic Physicians, Physician Assistants, Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, Registered Nurses, Licensed Practical Nurses, Certified Nursing Assistants, Paramedics, and Emergency Medical Technicians. In addition, the following licensed health care professionals are authorized to practice in Florida via Telehealth: Physicians, Osteopathic Physicians, Physician Assistants, and Advanced Practice Nurses. The EO can be found here.
  • The State Surgeon General has signed Emergency Order 22-001 waiving statutory procurement requirements to ensure DOH is able to deploy necessary action due to Hurricane Ian. This can be found here.
  • DOH has coordinated with the Office of Insurance Regulation to distribute an alert regarding permitted early prescription refills during a State of Emergency. This alert was sent to health insurers, managed care organizations, health entities, and licensed health care providers. The alert can be found here.
  • DOH has coordinated with Federal partners to support the deployment of nearly 100 individuals through various health and medical teams. These teams stand ready in Orlando, Atlanta, and Warner Robbins Air Force Base in Georgia.
  • Currently, DOH and AHCA’s Patient Movement Mission and other partners have evacuated 8,788 patients, as of 8:32 AM EST on Oct. 1, 2022. Currently, 152 health care facilities are actively evacuating individuals in areas of impacted from Hurricane Ian. The Department continues to assess and support evacuations as needed.
  • DOH has deployed 8 environmental health strike teams to support DeSoto, Sarasota, Hendry, Manatee, Highlands, Charlotte, St. Johns and Lee counties to conduct field assessments to evaluate environmental and public health risks. They are trained to identify issues with generator safety, drinking water contamination, and other safety hazards.
  • DOH continues to direct Florida health care practitioners interested in volunteering to the Volunteer Florida registration portal.
  • DOH’s Healthy Start Coalitions distributed pack and plays, diapers, wipes, and formula to shelters and continue to monitor the needs of the surrounding communities.
  • The Newborn Screening Laboratory in Jacksonville will be operational today and tomorrow to offset closures due to Hurricane Ian. Normal operations will resume on Monday, Oct. 3, 2022.
  • DOH in Orange County is facilitating the movement of children with special needs to Nemours Children’s Hospital.
  • DOH in Seminole County with community partners opened a shelter for children with enhanced medical needs, including those on ventilators, serving over 80 registered pediatric clients.
  • More than 450 emergency medical service vehicles have been provided to impacted counties and are being used to respond to community needs.
  • Emergency medical services staff are engaged in the tasks required to marshal and deploy ground and air EMS assets for disaster response. DOH’s Division of Emergency Preparedness and Community Support has handled mission requests to assist hospital and health care facility evacuations as well as special needs shelter requests for patient movements. Requests are ongoing and include augmentation of day-to-day EMS services for impacted areas.
  • Alachua and Pasco County health departments are assisting with providing oxygen to locations statewide, as needed.
  • DOH’s Office of Children Medical Services provided expedited translation services in Spanish and Haitian Creole, on topics such as carbon monoxide safety, boil water notices and food safety, to ensure public safety.
  • DOH continues to coordinate across 67 county health departments on any necessary preparation resources, in coordination with county emergency managers.
  • DCF is partnering with its community based care lead agencies to contact all caregivers/foster families with dependent children in their home to assess needs and ensure safety.
  • DCF has opened two Family Resource Support Centers with staff on site, including Hope Navigators, behavioral health partners who specialize in disaster recovery response, and public benefit eligibility specialists to help individuals and families. More information can be found here: www.myflfamilies.com/frsc
    • Locations include: New Port Richey and Tampa
  • The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced Thursday additional resources and flexibilities available in response to Hurricane Ian in the State of Florida. More information can be found at: CMS Announces Resources and Flexibilities to Assist with the Public Health Emergency in the State of Florida
  • The Myakka River under I-75 continues to rise, no longer making it safe to drive. Motorists should take an alternative route or follow the detour map located here.
  • Cut and Toss crews cleared over 4,457 miles (83% complete) of state roadways. Continue to listen to local law enforcement and county officials for potential detours
  • FDOT bridge inspectors continue to inspect bridges. Currently, 2,355 bridges have been inspected as of 7 a.m.
  • All High Priority Bridges Cleared in Tampa Bay, Southwest Florida, Northeast, and Central Florida
  • Projects under construction in the following counties can resume activities:
o   Alachua, Bay, Baker, Bradford, Broward, Calhoun, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Escambia, Franklin, Gadsden, Gilchrist, Gulf, Hamilton, Holmes, Indian River, Jackson, Jefferson, Lafayette, Leon, Levy, Liberty, Madison, Martin, Miami Dade, Monroe, Nassau, Okaloosa, Palm Beach, Putnam,  Santa Rosa, St. Johns, St. Lucie, Suwannee, Taylor, Union, Wakulla, Walton, Washington
Turnpike Service Plaza Closures
  • Turnpike Customer Service Walk-in Office in St. Pete

Road and Bridges

Current Major Road and Bridge Closures. The list of closures as of 7:00 a.m., 10/1/22 is listed below. Up-to-date closures listed on FL511.com:

  • Brevard County
o   A Max Brewer Memorial Parkway at Indian River – All lanes closed, both directions
  • Charlotte County
o   I-75 at MM 179 through MM 193 – All lanes closed, both directions
o   Tamiami Trail Southbound at Peace River – All lanes closed
o   US-41 Southbound at Peace River Bridge – All lanes closed
  • Columbia County
o   I-10 Westbound at I-75 Southbound – Off-ramp closed
o   I-10 Eastbound to I-75 Southbound – Off-ramp closed
o   I-75 Southbound at I-10 – All lanes closed
Media Release & Image: Office of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis