SWFL preparing for 2023 hurricane season; still recovering from Ian

Reporter: Gail Levy Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:
Hurricane Ian. CREDIT: WINK News

While Southwest Florida continues recovering from Hurricane Ian, this year’s hurricane season is a month away.

It’s not hard to remember the days immediately following Hurricane Ian and how tough they were. That’s why hurricane experts say preparing ahead of time is vital.

Make a plan, and prepare for the worst, whether that means leaving town or deciding to stay with friends or family. Those at the National Weather Service want you to have things figured out so you’re ready if or when a hurricane hits.

“We are particularly concerned for everybody in Southwestern Florida, everyone that sustained significant damage from Hurricane Ian,” Ross Giarratana from the National Weather Service said.

Giarratana knows the Southwest Florida area is vulnerable.

“Not everything is going to be unfortunately fixed and like how it was last year,” Giarratana said.

So that makes the need to prepare for hurricane season even more essential. Before the storm season starts, get the supplies you need to board up your home, know your evacuation zone, and plan for the worst. But, it’s what you need once the winds die down that’s extra important.

Your nonperishable food items really important to want to make sure that you have that those important documents on hand, flashlights, batteries, making sure all your devices are charged up as much as possible,” Giarratana said.

It’s hard to tell what this season will look like. But, Colorado State University issued its season forecast.

“They’re calling for a season that is just below normal. So usually, we have about 14 named storms throughout the hurricane season, and they’re calling for 13,” Giarratana said.

But it only takes one for it to be a memorable storm. And it’s only one month until we could start seeing storms developing across the waters.

“You can never get prepared too early,” Giarratana said.

Usually, there’s a Hurricane Tax Relief Week ahead of hurricane season. The bill for that passed unanimously in the Statehouse, it’s making its way to the Florida Senate. If passed, Hurricane Tax Relief Week would be May 27.

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