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Press Release

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CFO Patronis Highlights Disaster Preparedness, Urban Search & Rescue Teams in Ft. Myers


FT. MYERS, Fla. - Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis was joined by members of Florida Urban Search & Rescue (US&R) Task Force 6 in Ft. Myers to urge Floridians to prepare for disasters now before the next hurricane takes aim at Florida. There are a total of eight US&R teams statewide that are immediately deployed to aid communities that have been impacted by a natural or man-made disaster. The 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season started June 1st and experts recently predicted an above-normal hurricane season with the possibility of up to 21 named storms and six major hurricanes.

CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “As we begin the 2022 Hurricane Season, it’s my top priority to ensure Floridians have the tools and resources they need to prepare for the next storm before it takes aim at our state. Mother nature loves paradise and unfortunately, it’s not if but when a storm will strike. While Floridians know all too well the devastation hurricanes can have on their lives, it’s sometimes easy to not take the threat seriously. An above-normal hurricane season is predicted this year, with the possibility of up to six major hurricanes. As we’ve seen in the past, hurricanes can form and strengthen quickly, leaving little time to prepare and evacuate. It’s also imperative that Floridians know the warning signs of post-storm fraud and how to avoid being scammed following a storm. Thank you to Urban Search and Rescue Task Force 6 for joining me in Ft. Myers today to help educate Southwest Florida communities on the importance of having a disaster plan. The time is now to prepare and protect your family, your home, and your business. Do not wait until it’s too late.”

Senator Ray Rodrigues said, “In Florida, we know it’s only a matter of time before a hurricane makes landfall in our state and we must work together to ensure our communities are prepared. Thank you to CFO Patronis for highlighting important disaster preparedness information and to US&R Task Force 6 for their dedicated service during our greatest time of need. Don’t wait until it’s too late to prepare for hurricane season.”

Insurance Consumer Advocate Tasha Carter said, “The 2022 Hurricane Season is here and now is the time to ensure you and your family are prepared. It is vital to take action to protect your property including securing adequate insurance coverage or making necessary adjustments. Create a disaster plan that includes taking or downloading your important insurance documents if you must evacuate. Don’t wait until a storm is coming to protect your biggest investment – your home. Thank you to CFO Patronis and the Urban Search and Rescue Task Force 6 for helping educate consumers on disaster preparedness and to ensure Floridians are empowered with the tools they need to weather a storm and recover quickly.”

City of Fort Myers Mayor Kevin Anderson said, “Thank you to CFO Patronis for taking the time to highlight the importance of hurricane preparedness. As we all know, it’s no secret, the most predictable thing about hurricanes is that they are unpredictable. But having a solid, firm disaster plan in place will help your family weather the storm. I’d also like to say thank you to the Urban Search and Rescue Teams for their service in the Ft. Myers community as well as communities across the state. I sleep better at night knowing that you are prepared to respond to any level of disaster this state may face.”

US&R Task Force 6 Program Manager Shane Sibert said, “Hurricane season is here and it’s vital that our communities prepare now for what is predicted to be an active storm season. Just as we’ve seen with recent storms, they can develop and intensify fast. You must have your plan in place now because there will be little time to prepare once a storm is near. On behalf of US&R Task Force 6 I’d like to give a special thank you to CFO Patronis for everything he has done to support our life-saving missions.”

City of Fort Myers Fire Chief Tracy McMillon said, “Thank you to CFO Patronis and US&R Task Force 6 for hosting this disaster preparedness event today and encouraging our communities to get prepared for the 2022 Hurricane Season. Our state has been spared recently from a major storm but we know all too well that the next big hurricane could come our way at any time. Our first responders are prepared and you should be too. Don’t wait until it’s too late.”

Lee County Commission Vice Chairman Ray Sandelli said, “Lee County is proud to have CFO Patronis and Task Force 6 here today to highlight disaster preparedness information. With the 2022 Hurricane Season starting this week, now is the time to get the necessary supplies and plan in place. When the power is out and resources are limited, you will thank yourself for having a well thought out disaster plan in place. Take some time today and finalize your hurricane plan before we hit the peak of hurricane season.”

Visit PrepareFL.com for more information and to start your disaster plan today. CFO Patronis’ Insurance Consumer Helpline is available to assist Floridians with insurance issues and the claims process. Call the toll-free helpline at 1-877-MY-FL-CFO (693-5236), to talk to an insurance specialist Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.