For Immediate Release
October 2, 2022
ICYMI: Gov. DeSantis Directs FDOT to Expedite Emergency Repairs Needed to Restore Access to Pine Island
Access to Pine Island will be Restored by Saturday, October 8
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Ron DeSantis directed FDOT to assist Lee County to expedite emergency repairs to the road and bridges that provide motorists access to Pine Island. FDOT will begin mobilizing equipment, materials, and crews today, with access to Pine Island being restored by Saturday, October 8, 2022. These repairs are needed for first responders and residents to access the island, as well as other recovery efforts such as power restoration and debris removal.
FDOT’s Cut and Toss crews have cleared over 88% of Florida’s roads making transportation corridors passable in most of the state. A temporary road will need to be put in place to reconnect access from the mainland to Pine Island. Once the temporary road is complete, FDOT crews will continue clearing the path through the island to provide safe drivable access for first responders, disaster recovery experts, and residents.
“The 9,000 residents of Pine Island – some still on the island and those not – are without power, water, and other critical resources needed to recover from Hurricane Ian," said Governor Ron DeSantis. "FDOT has the workforce and resources needed to quickly restore this road and bridge and allow these families access to their homes so they can start rebuilding their lives.”
“FDOT is committed to serving Florida communities and assisting our partners, especially in such challenging times. Lee County has been a tremendous partner throughout this crisis, and we are glad to support them as they accelerate work to rebuild their community,” said FDOT Secretary Jared W. Perdue, P.E. “The Department is proud to offer our expertise to be able to safely and quickly restore access to the island and get families the vital supplies and services they desperately need.”
Once immediate recovery efforts have subsided, permanent repairs will subsequently be constructed. While the permanent replacement is expected to take some time to complete, the temporary road and bridges will be a safe short-term option for immediate access.
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The Florida Department of Transportation’s mission is to provide a safe transportation system that ensures the mobility of people and goods, enhances economic prosperity and preserves the quality of the state’s environment and communities. The department is committed to building a transportation system that not only fits the current needs of Florida’s residents and visitors but also enhances mobility throughout the state to accommodate its consistent and rapid growth. The unique nature of the Sunshine State and its year-round warm climate provides numerous opportunities to achieve the department’s mission through multiple transportation modes including highways/streets, air, rail, sea, spaceports, transit, and the ever-expanding deployment of bicycle & pedestrian facilities.