2017 is a year that many Florida residents will not forget for the rest of their lives. The devastation wrought from an unusually active hurricane season devastated entire communities, many of which are still working to recover today. In the wake of these tragedies, Florida’s government promised radical sweeping changes to help better ready the populace for future storms, but few actual changes have been enacted.
The Florida House of Representatives Select Committee on Hurricane Response has been responsible for identifying and suggesting remedies to better prepare Florida communities for major storms. Unfortunately, of the 78 recommendations that the committee has come up with, only 27 have been acted on so far.
Florida governor Rick Scott recently gave some remarks on Florida’s current state of readiness at the Governor’s Hurricane Conference in West Palm Beach. “As hard as it was last year, people worked together well,” said governor Scott, “I think almost everyone is pleased with debris removal, but it is the rebuilding that takes time.”.
Legislator’s came up with quite a list of potential ways to help better prepare the populace for an emergency, including utilizing one-way traffic flows on major highways. This would allow more people to evacuate in a timely manner. That’s why other priorities center around providing access to transportation, gas, food and water across the state is of such concern.
National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham spoke with the Insurance Journal about the recent changes enacted by Florida, saying that “It’s about understanding the risk, it’s understanding if you’re in an evacuation zone, and understanding you may not have far to go to get away from that risk,”.
Now that 2018’s hurricane season is upon us, Florida residents have to hope that the changes enacted so far will be enough. One thing’s for sure, there are still a lot of recommendations still to be acted on.