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Sanibel Causeway temporarily fixed for utility vehicles

CORRECTION Tropical Weather Florida
CORRECTS LOCATION TO FORT MYERS, NOT ST. JAMES CITY – In this aerial photo made in a flight provided by mediccorps.org, damage from Hurricane Ian is seen on the causeway leading to Sanibel Island, background, from Fort Myers, Fla., Friday, Sept. 30, 2022. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

(SANIBEL ISLAND, Florida)– The Sanibel Causeway, which suffered devastating damage during Hurricane Ian on September 18, has received temporary repairs and is expected to reopen later this week.

Gov. Ron DeSantis made the announcement, Tuesday, after which the first few trucks carrying supplies and workers traveled over the bridge to Sanibel Island.

The bridge collapsed in three different places, and the temporary patches to the damage need to be treated with caution.

“As you can see you’ve got to go pretty slow because this is a temporary patch,” DeSantis said while trucks made their way across the repaired parts of the bridge.

These repairs have allowed 200 bucket trucks, 150 pickup trucks, and two tractor-trailers to get onto Sanibel to assist in restoring power there.

Airlifts and barges have helped move some equipment onto the island before repairs to the causeway began, but Gov. DeSantis said fixing the bridge is key to getting those areas back on the grid.

“You can only helicopter or barge so many people and so much equipment,” DeSantis said. “So we were looking at ways, how can we get more trucks on the island on Sanibel as soon as possible?”

According to Gov. DeSantis, the Sanibel Causeway will be open for civilians on Oct. 24.