Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state has launched a website to help reconnect families who are looking for loved ones who may have been in the path of Hurricane Ian.
The governor said families can go to missing.fl.gov. They can enter the last known address of their relatives and loved ones and any particular concerns they may have.
Officials said that cellphone service is spotty in many Florida counties, especially in the Fort Myers area, which took a direct hit from Hurricane Ian.
Prior to the storm, the state asked residents who were sheltering in place to fill out a form. The state said it received 20,000 responses prior to the storm. Of those, nearly half have responded back to the state to say they’re safe.
State officials cautioned that they do not believe that 10,000 people are in danger. They said that cellphone service is spotty and has made it difficult for some people to reach officials.
Officials said they are trying to track down survivors in person as carriers work to restore cellphone and electric service to the region.
DeSantis said on Friday responders completed a “hasty” search for survivors along the coastline. They will begin a more thorough search of residences on Friday.