Island Prepares For Ian; Closure Listing

SC Staff Report

Sanibel residents and businesses have been preparing for Hurricane Ian since this past weekend. The city declared a local state of emergency Monday evening and is recommending a voluntary evacuation. A decision on a mandatory evacuation order from Lee County is expected as early as Tuesday morning.

The Sanibel Police Department will issue hurricane reentry passes until 4 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 800 Dunlop Rd. And solid waste collection will occur as usual Tuesday, but has been canceled on Wednesday. Residents are advised not to set out refuse on Tuesday night or Wednesday morning.

Island Closings:
• City Hall offices closing at noon Tuesday and closed Wednesday
• Sanibel Recreation Center closed and programs canceled Tuesday and Wednesday
• “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge closed at 2 p.m. Monday until further notice.
• The Sanibel School will be closed Tuesday and Wednesday
• Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum open half day Tuesday and closed Wednesday

Two City Meetings Rescheduled
• Sanibel Planning Commission meeting and its two noticed public hearings on Wednesday rescheduled for 10 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 4
• City Council’s final budget hearing on Wednesday is postponed until 5:01 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3

Related Articles
Sanibel Declares State of Emergency
Sanibel Under Evacuation Order

Shops at Jerry’s Plaza are preparing Monday for Hurricane Ian.

Update 2 p.m. Monday, Sept. 26
Sanibel City Council is holding a special meeting at 5:30 p.m. today, Sept. 26, at City Hall to discuss declaring a local state of emergency and volunteer evacuation as Tropical Storm Ian is expected to impact Florida Tuesday to Thursday. One of the two island’s gas stations ran out of gas Sunday, as residents started preparing for the storm. Rebel station manager told the SC she didn’t know when the station would have gas again. The Chevron station, 1015 Periwinkle Way, still had gas as of Monday morning.

Original article from Saturday, Sept. 24

Island residents started stocking up on water, other grocery supplies, and filling their gas tanks on Saturday, in anticipation of the storm brewing south of Cuba and headed into the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Tropical Storm Ian is expected to strengthen significantly and approach Southwest Florida as a major hurricane by Wednesday, Sept. 28.

The City of Sanibel has issued its third storm update and urging residents and business to have major hurricane preparations well underway. Residents should have a Hurricane Reentry Pass. The department extended its hours, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, to issue passes. Applications can be obtained from the city’s website and filled out in advance.  The pass dated 2021 is the current one.

Tropical Storm Ian is expected to rapidly strengthen this weekend as it enters the warm water of the Gulf of Mexico and become a hurricane late Sunday.

The city’s recycling center has sand available for residents to bag. The center will be open until 4 p.m. Saturday and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25. Residents must bring their own bags. The city will announces additional public hours for the recycling center in its update on Sunday.

Residents, business owners and island workers are encouraged to register for AlertLee, a Lee County emergency notification system. It’s used in situations such as severe weather, missing persons, evacuation notices, boil water notices, fire or floods and active shooter situations.

Hotels near the Regional Southwest Airport in Fort Myers are sold out. Governor Ron DeSantis has declared a state of emergency for 24 Florida counties, including Lee County.

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