How Grocery Stores Are Preparing For Hurricane Ian

Wednesday evening, Hurricane Ian made contact with Florida's southwest coast as a Category 4 storm with 150 MPH winds, per NBC. The next morning, its status was decreased to a tropical storm. As it made its way through Florida and towards South Carolina, it caused severe flooding and left 2.5 million residents without power. Though the storm was downgraded, its return to 70 MPH winds indicates a may become hurricane strength again, according to ABC News. Ron DeSantis, Florida's governor, has declared a state of emergency, and President Joe Biden believes the storm "could be the deadliest storm in Florida history." Biden went on to say that the hurricane could cause "a substantial loss of life," in a press conference on Thursday, September 29, 2022.

In some parts of Florida, Hurricane Ian is definitely keeping residents inside their houses. Although many Floridians likely stocked up on essentials in the days leading up to Hurricane Ian's arrival, some last-minute shoppers might have had a hard time purchasing what they need in the coming days.

Many stores have adjusted their hours

Florida grocery stores have been hard at work preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Ian. It was reported yesterday that Publix has closed a handful of Central Florida stores with the hope of reopening on Friday, September 30, 2022, (via Wesh 2). To keep locals informed, Publix has added a store status map to its website to indicate which stores are in the affected areas. Publix recommends calling stores in the danger zone ahead of time to check for varying business hours.

According to Delish, Trader Joe's stores in Tampa Bay, St. Petersburg, and Naples are closed at least through the end of Thursday with the potential of reopening Friday depending on weather conditions. Similar to Publix, Walmart posted a store status map online showing shoppers that more than 200 locations are currently closed throughout Florida and Georgia.

These closures are likely to be in the best interest of employees and locals alike. Although, for those lacking food and supplies, the frustration may be mounting.