How Red Lobster Is Preparing For Hurricane Ian

As of Wednesday, September 28, Hurricane Ian rose to a Category Four storm that's expected to hit Florida as soon as Thursday morning (per NBC). According to the National Hurricane Center's Twitter account, "catastrophic" flooding and a large amount of wind and rain are expected when the hurricane reaches Florida's peninsula. Extreme wind has already been an issue in areas such as Englewood, Rotonda, Cape Coral, and Bonita Springs, where residents have been advised to seek shelter. According to NBC, the storm is only 2 mph away from becoming a Category Five event, as it's already reached wind gusts of 155 mph.

Headquartered in Orlando, Florida is the well-known seafood chain Red Lobster (per Corporate Office HQ). At the time of writing, Orlando is under a hurricane warning as the storm is expected to head northeast after landfall, according to the Sun Sentinel. Furthermore, 313 Orlando International Airport cancellations had occurred by Wednesday morning (via NBC). Because of Red Lobster's proximity to the danger zone, the company has released a statement on Twitter.

Hours may vary as Orlando is struck

Red Lobster provided a business update following Hurricane Ian's increase to a Category Four storm. The company posted on Twitter that "[its] restaurant and Restaurant Support Center operating hours may vary, and [they] may be slower to respond to your online and phone messages." As mentioned earlier, Red Lobster's headquarters are in Orlando, Florida, so business is likely to be affected by the weather event. Red Lobster continued with a heartfelt message, "As Hurricane Ian approaches Florida, our thoughts are with all those in the storm's path. Our guests, our team members, and the communities in which we operate are all part of the Red Lobster family, and we hope everyone remains safe." The company also provided an online way to check the status of local restaurants.

Red Lobster has been known to aid in hurricane efforts in the past. According to PR Newswire, the restaurant donated $1 from every purchase up to $250,000 to help families impacted by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma in 2017. "I'm incredibly proud to see how these communities have come together to provide genuine caring and relief. But, they need more. I know we can come together across the country to provide even more support," Red Lobster president Salli Setta said at the time.