Floridians are still responding to the damages caused by Hurricane Ian. The Florida state government has proved successful in a speedy recovery, and now massive gains are being seen in the state-backed Citizens Property Insurance Corp.
Medical examiners had confirmed 122 deaths from Hurricane Ian as of Friday, up from 114 a week earlier, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. A news release from the department said 60 of the confirmed deaths were in Lee County, where the Category 4 storm made initial landfall Sept. 28 before crossing the state. Charlotte, Collier and Sarasota counties each had eight confirmed deaths, while Monroe County had seven. Volusia County had five, while Hardee and Manatee counties each had four. In all, hurricane-related deaths had been confirmed in 18 counties.
As another sign of its explosive growth, the state-backed Citizens Property Insurance Corp. has topped 1.1 million policies. Citizens had 1,107,033 policies as of Friday, up from 1,098,762 a week earlier and 1,090,508 two weeks earlier, according to the Citizens website. Citizens, which was created as an insurer of last resort, has seen massive growth during the past two years as private insurers have dropped policies, and in some cases gone insolvent, amid financial losses. As a comparison, Citizens had 521,289 policies on Oct. 31, 2020, and 725,942 policies on Oct. 31, 2021.
Citizens' website in regard to Hurricane Ian states, "Citizens is committed to responding quickly to disasters and providing local services and support to policyholders in a crisis."
The Floridian Reporter Jim McCool contributed to this News Service of Florida story