Cape officials urge residents to take Hurricane Ian’s approach seriously
City of Cape Coral officials urged residents to take Hurricane Ian seriously Tuesday morning in a press conference at the Emergency Operations Center.
Mayor John Gunter stated that city is under a hurricane warning, and City Manager Rob Hernandez issued a local state of emergency Tuesday morning.
“For our residents, your preparation should be nearly completed now,” Gunter said.
“This is a very serious storm, and I ask our community to please take this storm very seriously.”
Select shelters throughout the county have opened, and Gunter said finding a hotel or a friend outside an evacuation zone to stay with is recommended.
He said the city is prepped and ready, and will get through the storm as they have in past circumstances.
Cape Coral Fire Chief Ryan Lamb said officials continue to see changes in the storm’s path, and will make decisions based on the most up-to-date information.
“As we continue to see some shifts in this track as it shifts a little further to the south, it puts a greater emphasis on our preparedness and action here in the city of Cape Coral,” Lamb said.
As of the time of the conference, a curfew is not in effect and the sale of alcohol is permitted.
“In the future, should those things be needed and warranted, we could use (the local state of emergency) to enact a curfew or limit the sales of alcohol,” Lamb said. “We don’t anticipate (that will occur) at this time, but those are tools that we have.”
Lamb said he is confident in his staff to be prepared and respond to the storm, and that they train all year for weather events such as a major hurricane.
He reiterated that when sustained winds reach 45 mph, it means a temporary cessation of police and fire call-outs in the city. Once sustained winds subside below that threshold, those agencies will again be able to respond.
Lamb said residents should call 311 for storm-related issues that are not emergency level.
“Be calm. Be neighborly. And be ready for this storm should we continue to see this forecast shift to an area that’s going to impact us to a greater degree,” Lamb added.