Sanibel EMS and firefighters evacuating as Hurricane Ian approaches SWFL

Reporter: Céline McArthur
Published: Updated:

Sanibel Island is under emergency evacuation.

While residents won’t be forced out of their homes, emergency responders won’t be able to respond to calls because they are also evacuating.

EMS and firefighters are leaving the island before 10 p.m.

As Hurricane Ian gets closer, the Sanibel Causeway will be too dangerous to cross.

In fact, it won’t be safe to drive anywhere.

Firefighters told WINK News it’s a sign to take this hurricane seriously.

“I would tell them to heed the warnings, bad situation unnecessarily,” said Robert Bell, Sanibel firefighter, and paramedic.

The Sanibel Fire Department told WINK News they’re impressed with how many people evacuated.

If you’re thinking about leaving tonight, as of now, the roads are still driveable.

The barrier island of Sanibel is under a mandatory evacuation as Ian makes its way toward the coast of Southwest Florida.

A formal state of emergency was called on Monday. And on Tuesday, a curfew was issued from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.

EMS and fire are not the only ones evacuating.

Island Water Association employees will also be evacuating. Sanibel residents that remain on the island should boil their water after 1 a.m. on Wednesday.

The Sanibel Recreation Center will be closed on Wednesday and the city has canceled their solid waste collection on Wednesday.

Winds of 40 miles per hour or more could cause the Sanibel Causeway to close.

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