Now that Hurricane Ian has departed Florida, the reality of what residents face will start to sink in. This storm was so destructive that thousands of people in Florida without flood insurance could be financially decimated.
Ian was the first Category 4 hurricane to hit the Gulf Coast and will never be forgotten. The west coast of Florida was crushed. Massive amounts of rain, coupled with the tide that slammed the coast, meant huge areas in Fort Myers and in and around Tampa were decimated by flooding.
In a story in Politico, Mark Friedlander of the Insurance Information Institute laid it out succinctly.
“Ian could financially ruin thousands of families in Florida. There’s no better way to say it.”
Here’s the terrible news realty; reports say less than 30% of the people that live in the counties that were declared disaster areas have flood insurance. There are 2.8 million people that live in that region. Hard County has 8,000 households, and 100 of them are covered with flood insurance.
What does that mean? Residents are on their own in having to pay for repairs or find a new home if their house is damaged or destroyed by the hurricane.
The insurance industry in Florida has already been facing financial issues, which will affect people who were covered receiving the funds they need quickly.
The damage this storm caused will be astronomical, already estimated at $55-$65 billion to homes, farms, businesses, and infrastructure in Florida.
One industry that was hit especially hard was the citrus industry. The cost of oranges and orange juice is going to go way up.
Ian is now graded as a Post-Tropical Cyclone and is in the Carolinas on Saturday.