Just in time for the start of the 2018 hurricane season, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) has launched a new website, FloridaDisaster.biz, to help Florida businesses prepare for and recover from hurricanes and other disasters.

In a recent press release published by Florida Trend Magazine, Governor Rick Scott said:

Floridians understand the importance of being prepared for disasters, especially during hurricane season. This new website will help businesses make safe and informed decisions for themselves, their employees and their customers. Every Florida business can visit FloridaDisaster.biz, make a disaster plan and stay updated as we move further into hurricane season.”

The website focuses on three main areas:

  1. Prepare. Florida businesses can register, obtain a free disaster planning tool kit for families and businesses, view a list of resources available for assistance (including the Florida Division of Emergency Management, Emergency State Assistance Information Hotline, and the Florida SBDC Network), and view evacuation orders and re-entry guidelines.
  2. Respond. Safety is the first priority following a disaster. This section offers current disaster updates, business open/close status, business damage assessment survey, road closure/travel information, business re-entry procedures, as well as evacuation and curfew reports.
  3. Recover. Once in the recovery phase, the website offers advice, as well as state and federal resources to help businesses document any damage. There are also links to the Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program (offers between $1,000 and $5,000 interest free for 90 to 180 days), Disaster Unemployment Assistance, Small Business Loans, and Dislocated Worker Grant Program.

If Irma’s impact in Southwest Florida taught us anything, it is to be prepared and the State just made it a lot easier for Florida business owners with the launch of FloridaDisaster.Biz.