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First responders making progress as restoration efforts continue in southwest Florida

WTSP-TV Tampa-St. Petersburg 10/4/2022 Jordan Highsmith

Thousands of first responders have been working around the clock to restore areas of Lee County hard-hit by Hurricane Ian.

Gov. Ron DeSantis held a news conference on Monday in Cape Coral to speak about the restoration and recovery efforts from line workers restoring power outages to roadways being built in the wake of Hurricane Ian.

The Florida Department of Transportation is working to create a temporary bridge to Pine Island and another to Sanibel Island. More than 130 trucks have been sent to help with the construction projects, DeSantis said. 

Additionally, Lee County Electric Cooperative is working in partnership with the Florida Electric Cooperative Association and other partners to restore power in the area. 

RELATED: ‘It’s disheartening’ | Englewood family business of 32 years destroyed by Hurricane Ian

"Since mutual aid efforts to restore power began, the Lee County Electric Co-op has already moved up their timeline from October 23 to October 8 for all impacted areas except for Pine Island and Sanibel," the governor's office said in a press release.

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Other power companies, including Duke Energy, also shifted their resources to Lee County to help with restoration efforts.

First responders are also working to restore running water in Lee County. Engineers identified and assessed various cracks in the water infrastructure. Lee County is approved for individual assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Those in need of individual or household assistance can call 1-800-621-3362 or visit

Residents in need of food, water and ice can find them at these eight points of distribution in Lee County.

  • Old Bonita Springs Library 
    • 26876 Pine Ave., Bonita Springs, FL 34135
  • Kelly Road Soccer Complex
    • 10750 Kelly Road, Fort Myers, FL 33908
  • Cape Coral Sports Complex
    • 1410 Sports Blvd., Cape Coral, FL 33991
  • Cape Coral Leonard Street
    • 4820 Leonard Street, Cape Coral, FL 33904
  • Estero High School Ballfield Park
    • 9100 Williams Road, Estero, FL 33928
  • North Fort Myers Rec Center
    • 2000 N. Recreation Park Way, North Fort Myers, FL 33903
  • Fleamasters Fleamarket
    • 4135 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Fort Myers, FL 33916
  • Veterans Park Rec Center 
    • 55 Homestead Road S., Leigh Acres, FL 33938

RELATED: Sarasota County Schools closed indefinitely after Hurricane Ian's impacts

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