Hurricane Ian aftermath Thursday updates: Boil water lifted for parts of Collier; airport reopens

This is a live news blog with information about the aftermath of Hurricane Ian in Southwest Florida Our reporters and photographers are spread out across Southwest Florida covering our communities and providing the latest information. 

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7:02 p.m. l Boil water notice lifted for parts of Collier

A boil water notice has been lifted for Isles of Capri, Goodland and all areas west of U.S. 41 from Seagate Drive to Bonita Beach Road.

The boil water notice remains in effect for Gulfshore Boulevard and The Strand at Bay Colony

Residents may check the current status of boil water notices on the Water Outage and Boil Water map at

Residents with questions about their water service may call Customer Service at 239-252-2380 or the Collier Information Hotline by dialing 311 within Collier County or 239-252-8444. Information can also be found at and social media channels including and

6:24 p.m. l Naples Airport to reopen Saturday

Naples Airport has announced it will resume regular operations Saturday, Oct. 1.

However, because of airfield lighting damage and restoration efforts, the airport will operate only between 7 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. until further notice.

Due to limited air traffic control services, users are encouraged to file their flight plans early to obtain their Expected Departure Clearance Time (EDCT), the city of Naples announced in a news release Friday.

"At this time, the airport is still restricting flight training activities in order to better facilitate recovery operations for the community," the release said.

And National Aeronautic Association offices will reopen Monday, Oct. 3.

4:58 p.m. l 911 center Wednesday fielded 5 times more calls than normal

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office reported that the 911 telecommunications center fielded 5,294 calls Wednesday, about five times the normal amount. On Thursday, a day after Hurricane Ian struck, workers fielded 4,291 calls – more than the 4,038 total calls the center received the day after Irma hit in 2017.

4:03 p.m. l Collier County Manager Amy Patterson: 'It’s going to be a long haul'

Collier County Manager Amy Patterson told MSNBC on Friday that her staff is working on surveying the “extensive” damage to infrastructure, homes and business, saying “it’s going to be a long haul.”

The county was among the worst hit in southwest Florida. Hurricane Ian brought a storm surge of more than nine feet and reportedly left eight people dead. Half the county — roughly 134,000 customers — do not have power.

“It’s going to take time to evaluate it let alone putting together a plan on how to rebuild,” said Patterson, who said she and other county emergency management officials are crafting “debris management plans.”

She said cell phone service is “fine,” but said people have better luck with texts and calls as opposed to sending or receiving photos or videos.

“[Cell service] is okay in some place and others not available at all,” she said.

— USA Today Network-Florida Enterprise/Politics Editor Sergio Bustos

4 p.m. FGCU cancels classes, events

All Florida Gulf Coast University classes and events have been cancelled through Oct. 9, according to the university's Twitter account.

3:55 p.m.: Mandatory curfew in place for Collier County and City of Naples

A mandatory curfew is in place for all of Collier County and the City of Naples between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m. It is anticipated that the curfew will remain in effect until power is largely restored, according to officials.

The curfew does not apply to emergency responders, employees at health care facilities, critical staff for businesses that provide essential services or those seeking medical assistance.

3:39 p.m. l Reports: Dome homes, Snook Inn destroyed on Marco

Two iconic places on Marco Island did have not survive Hurricane Ian, reports say.

The Snook Inn said Friday on its Instagram that the powerful storm destroyed the dome homes off the island. "The iconic dome homes at Cape Romano sadly didn’t make it through this storm. If you were lucky enough to visit while they were still standing share your pics and be sure to tag us," the restaurant said.

As for The Snook Inn, the restaurant did not confirm it ws destoryed, saying: "Yes, there was damage but we will come back stronger."

TV journalist Ryan Clarke Arbogast reported on Twitter that he Snook Inn was gone and provided photos.

3:24 p.m.: It will take weeks to assess Bonita Springs damage

Debris and flooding are making it unsafe on Bonita Springs roadways, and first responders were assisting with rescue and recovery efforts, city leaders said.

Community residents “have help coming,” Fire Chief Greg DeWitt said. “We know we have five federal teams. (That) encompasses high water vehicles, swift water teams and structural collapse teams.

Read story »

2:50 p.m.: Humane Society Naples experienced no structural damage

Humane Society Naples is working with partners across Collier and Lee counties to assist those who were affected by Hurricane Ian.

Humane Society Naples locations experienced no structural damage, according to a press release. Animals were relocated to the main shelter on Airport Pulling Road and the Oaks Kennels located east of Interstate 75, where staff has remained to provide onsite care since Sept. 27.

Humane Society Naples will remain closed for adoptions through Oct. 4.

2:42 p.m. Six premature newborns transferred from Lee Health to Naples hospital

Six premature newborns, with at least one weighing less than one pound, have been transferred from Lee Health’s neonatal intensive care unit to NCH North Naples Hospital.

Lee Health is evacuating hundreds of patients out of HealthPark Medical Center in south Lee County and from Gulf Coast Medical Center off Daniels Road after both campuses faced a significant drop in water pressure after Hurricane Ian.

Read story »

2:36 pm. DeSantis to Pine Island residents: "We've got to provide access"

Stopping at the Lee County village of Matlacha, Gov. Ron DeSantis Friday afternoon attempted to give some assurance to residents eager to return to homes on neighboring Pine Island, cut off from the mainland by road and bridge damage from Hurricane Ian.

“Look, I’m committed to fixing that, you know, with the state of Florida,” DeSantis said. “Obviously, the county can help. We’ve got to provide access. But how quickly can that be done, even with best efforts is unclear.”

Similar destruction is keeping even more residents away from homes on Sanibel Island, not far from where Ian made landfall and where rescue workers have gone door-to-door checking on the safety of those who remained while the Category 4 storm tore through.

Florida Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie said that getting law enforcement and other officials onto the barrier islands is among the first tasks, to clear debris and gauge the security of still-standing roads and other structures.

“Then, we will work on trying to get you guys back in there,” Guthrie said.

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno said he’s talked with state officials about getting a ferry that could be used to temporarily move residents and emergency workers onto the barrier islands.

He and DeSantis also flexed muscle by saying that security will be a priority in the wake of the storm.

“We are not going to tolerate, I mean zero tolerance when we say anyone who thinks they’re going to thrive on the residents of this county or state, when we just took a horrific hit, I can guarantee you, that is not going to happen,” said Marceno.

DeSantis chimed in. “I was touring Punta Gorda yesterday and they’ve boarded up all the businesses and there were people who wrote on their plywood, ‘you loot, we shoot,’” the governor said.

“At the end of the day, we are not going to allow lawlessness to take advantage of this situation,” he added.

1:49 p.m. | What Bonita Springs residents need to know

Motorists are instructed to stay off the roadways to allow recovery efforts to proceed safely, the city of Bonita Springs warned Friday.

"Search and rescue efforts continue throughout the county with local, state and federal resources on air, sea and land," city officials said. "First responders are encountering traffic that is hindering their efforts. Traffic is also slowing responding agencies that are assessing roads, restoring electrical service and staging other recovery efforts.

Access to Bonita Beach Road from the Forester Drive and Hickory Boulevard intersection is limited to residents on foot only. Lee County Department of Transportation closed Big Hickory Pass Bridge due to damage from Hurricane Ian.

The closure of the bridge, which is on the south end of Estero Island between Fort Myers Beach and Bonita Beach, is currently effective. During a bridge inspection Friday, engineers identified deficiencies, leading to the closure. Lee DOT is working with the Florida Department of Transportation, the news release said.

Also, the city will be conducting structural inspections and some structures may be condemned. Bonita Springs earlier Friday also started the first push for debris removal.

Residents are encouraged to visit or for updates. The city also will post updates to the city Facebook page  and the city’s website.

Lee County is working with its partners to establish Points of Distribution for free food and water. Those sites will be announced Friday afternoon and will be located throughout the county.

Lee County shelter operations continue and shelter capacity will be maintained. If your home was impacted by the storm and you need shelter, you can still go. Check for updates on shelter locations.

Crews from Lee County Department of Transportation continue to assess area roads and bridges. The following bridges are closed: Sanibel Causeway, three bridges in Matlacha, New Pass, Big Carlos Pass Bridge and Big Hickory Pass Bridge.

Lee County Utilities and other water providers ask that anyone who witnesses water bubbling up from the ground report it to the utility serving your area. Remember to conserve water as much as possible.

  • Please continue to be vigilant and alert as sheet flow can still impact water levels of rivers and canals in the coming days.

  • While staying at home and cleaning storm-related yard waste:

  • Stack it separately from garbage or building debris.

  • Yard waste does not need to be bundled after the storm.

  • Place it in piles that can easily be managed by collection personnel with a claw truck.

  • Do not place any waste below overhead obstacles such as trees or powerlines or near hydrants or mailboxes.

  • If working with a chainsaw, please observe all safety precautions. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends:

  • Clear away dirt, debris, small tree limbs and rocks from the saw’s chain path. Look for nails, spikes or other metal in the tree before cutting.

  • Shut off the saw or engage its chain brake when carrying the saw on rough or uneven terrain.

  • Keep your hands on the saw’s handles, and maintain balance while operating the saw.

  • Proper personal protective equipment must be worn when operating the saw, which includes hand, foot, leg, eye, face, hearing and head protection.

  • Do not wear loose-fitting clothing.

  • Be careful that the trunk or tree limbs will not bind against the saw.

  • Watch for branches under tension; they may spring out when cut.

  • Gasoline-powered chainsaws must be equipped with a protective device that minimizes chainsaw kickback

1:42 p.m. | Meals of Hope providing food

Meals of Hope, a food supply charity based in Collier County, is providing meals to people in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian.

“We distributed 1,760 hot meals (Thursday) and hope to do the same again Friday and Saturday at North Collier Regional Park by the softball fields,” Steve Popper, president of the nonprofit.

The hours will be 4 to 6 p.m. at the park, 15000 Livingston Road.

1:20 p.m. | What Marco Island residents need to know

The City of Marco Island released updated information for residents following Hurricane Ian on Friday morning.

Here's what you need to know:


  • LCEC is working with Florida Power and Light to restore power.

  • The main power feed to LCEC is out. FPL has not provided an estimated restoration timeframe yet.

  • Turn off appliances, boat docks and pool equipment before power is restored for safety.


  • There is no boil water notice.

  • Water and sewer services are intact city-wide.


  • All main roads and bridges on Marco Island are open and passable.

  • Stay off streets as much as possible.

  • Do not drive through standing water.


  • Open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Mackle Park Racquet Center, 1361 Andalusia Terrace.

  • Residents who urgently need to call a family member will have access to a phone for no more than two minutes to let them know they are alive and OK.


  • Curbside debris will begin Monday, Oct. 3.

  • Separate storm litter and debris into piles: normal trash, vegetative debris, construction debris, appliances and white goods, electronics and hazardous waste


  • Both Publix locations on Marco Island are open.

  • Winn-Dixie is open, including the pharmacy.


  • There are no gas stations open at this time.


  • Register online at or download the FEMA app. For more information or help with FEMA assistance, call 800-621-3362.

  • Take photos of damage, including the high-water line.


  • To report a lost or found boat, call 239-389-5050.

  • Report in person in the lobby of the police department from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • Report via direct message to the Marco Island Police Department on their social media pages.


  • All boating and personal watercraft use on Marco Island waterways are prohibited due to hazardous conditions.

  • Assessment of waterways is ongoing.

  • Abandoned or towed vehicles

  • To retrieve a towed motor vehicle, call Executive Auto at 239-642-0003.


  • Place in a well-ventilated area at least 20 feet from structures.

  • Check the specifications for limitations on generator.

  • Never fuel generator while it is on

1:02 p.m. | Hurricane Ian set to hit South Carolina

Hurricane Ian is set to strike South Carolina imminently. Watch the live link.

12:41 p.m. | Naples police say phones down, call 911 for emergencies

Naples police reported that phones are down citywide and cannot receive or make calls.

Anyone with an emergency is urged to call 911, but only for an emergency.

Also, you can also try calling (239) 398-9513, which is a cell number in the city dispatch center.

12:23 p.m. | How to donate to help Hurricane Ian victims

The Collier Community Foundation has reactivated their Collier Comes Together Relief Fund to help Hurricane Ian victims.

This allows the foundation to get immediate aid where it's needed most, according to the foundation's press release.

More to know: Collier County officials issue precautionary boil-water notice following Hurricane Ian

One-hundred percent of the donations are given to nonprofits helping victims and their families without administrative fees.

"The fund serves to assure donors' support will reach its intended cause," the press release said. "Fraudulent sites pop-up following a disaster or emergency that mislead donors about where their funds will go."

For more information and to donate online to the Hurricane Relief Fund, visit

Checks may also be mailed to the Collier Community Foundation at 1110 Pine Ridge Road, Suite 200, Naples, FL 34108.  Please note Hurricane Fund in the memo line.

11:04 a.m. | Bonita springs update

Bonita Springs Utilities, Inc. has maintained water service during and after Hurricane Ian throughout our service area, with the exception of Bonita Beach including Little Hickory Island, Big Hickory Island, and Black Island and the area west of Imperial Shores Blvd along Bonita Beach Road.  These areas remain without water service at this time.  All other portions of the service areas have water service available and are not under a boil water notice.  FP&L has restored power to BSU’s two water plants and back-up generator power is no longer required.  BSU’s two wastewater plants continue to rely on back-up generator power. We continue to request that our members conserve water.  This is necessary as many of our wastewater lift stations remain without power and it will take time to pump down stations and send flow to the treatment plants.

If you have any questions, please contact Andy Koebel, Director of Operations, Bonita Springs Utilities, Inc. at (239) 992-0711.

10:38 a.m. Two million people without power in Florida

Power: Nearly 2 million customers were without power Friday morning, according to utility tracker Florida Power & Light, the state’s largest utility, reported Friday that it had restored power to more than 1 million customers — more than half of those affected by the monster storm.

Dozens of first responders were spotted along I-75 North in Collier County on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022, one day after Hurricane Ian swept through the area.
Dozens of first responders were spotted along I-75 North in Collier County on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022, one day after Hurricane Ian swept through the area.

Travel: Airports in Tampa and Orlando were expected to reopen Friday, while Fort Myers Airport in southwest Florida remained closed Friday. More than 1,660 flights were canceled Friday due to the storm, according to FlightAware.

Deaths. The destruction left behind by Ian has made it difficult to get an accurate assessment of the loss of life, but there are already reports of 21 deaths, officials said Friday morning.

State officials said only one of these deaths, in Polk County, was confirmed as a result of the storm, and authorities were still evaluating the cause of the 20 other deaths: 12 were in Charlotte County and eight in Collier County.

But local officials in these areas were also reporting deaths:

  • Sanibel Island officials reported two deaths on Thursday.

  • In Lee County, which includes the island of Cayo Costa near Cape Coral where the storm made landfall, at least five deaths were confirmed, Sheriff Carmine Marceno told CNN.

  • In Deltona, about 30 miles northeast of Orlando, a 72-year-old man died after falling into a canal while using a hose to drain his pool in the heavy rain, the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said.

  • In Sarasota County, the sheriff's office reported two deaths related to the hurricane.

8:49 a.m. l Free meal, fellowship at Chabad of Naples

Chabad of Naples is hosting a community barbecue to help people in need of a hot meal and fellowship. All Naples residents, with or without power, are invited to attend at 5:30 p.m. Friday outside the Chabad center, 1789 Mandarin Road, and enjoy food straight off the grill.

“It’s important for us to come together as a community during this difficult time. When we unite, and come together as a community, that’s when we feel God’s presence,” said Rabbi Fishel Zaklos in a news release.

Its community invitation proclaimed: “We might not have electricity, but we have each other.”

Chabad has organized a volunteer medical rescue group, who are taking calls, providing medical care, and rescuing locals from flooded homes. On Friday, it's delivering 200 Shabbat meals to the community, and anyone in need. On Sunday, Chabad’s team of volunteers will help locals to clear debris and cut and remove fallen trees.

For information, call Chabad at 239-262-4474.

Bonita Springs Utilities mostly up now

          Bonita Springs Utilities, Inc. has maintained water service during and after Hurricane Ian throughout its service area, with the exception of Bonita Beach including:

  • Little Hickory Island

  • Big Hickory Island

  • Black Island

  • The area west of Imperial Shores Blvd along Bonita Beach Road.

These areas remain without water service at this time.

All other portions of the service areas have water service available and are not under a boil water notice.  FP&L has restored power to BSU’s two water plants and back-up generator power is no longer required.  BSU’s two wastewater plants continue to rely on back-up generator power.

The utility continues to request that all members conserve water.  Many of the  wastewater lift stations remain without power and it will take time to pump down stations and send flow to the treatment plants.

Hurricane coverage

Flood damage: Naples takes stock of their homes, belongings after Hurricane Ian

Naples Pier: Mayor Teresa Heitmann: Naples Pier is 'not gone,' but heavily damaged

Rebuilding: Naples mayor: Rebuilding from Hurricane Ian is going to 'take time'

Curfew: Collier County issues second consecutive curfew following Hurricane Ian

Surviving Ian: Fort Myers Beach couple share harrowing tale of surviving Hurricane Ian on their boat

Florida Hurricane Guide: Find out everything you need to know about preparing for a hurricane or tropical storm in our resource guide

This article originally appeared on Naples Daily News: Latest updates on Hurricane Ian's impact in Naples