After more than five feet of water rendered Sanibel Fire Station 172 uninhabitable in the wake of Hurricane Ian, the Sanibel Fire Rescue District was able to purchase a temporary, portable structure for emergency operations. On Friday, March 3, the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon-cutting at the 5171 Sanibel Captiva Road location to celebrate the station’s return to operations.


The temporary structure will house three firefighters and emergency support equipment until the permanent fire house can be rebuilt, which is expected to take up to two years to complete, says Capt. John DiMaria.


“We are beyond excited as a fire district to be able to reestablish our coverage area and respond in a much faster time to our citizens who may be in need,” he said. “We are grateful for all the support of our community during these trying times and look forward to providing assistance to those who may be in need. The chamber has been a staple on this island for many years and has been instrumental with the establishment of many of our island businesses.”


“We all breathe easier knowing our first responders are available and accommodated as Sanibel Island gets back on its proverbial feet,” said John Lai, chamber president and CEO. “We salute and thank the Sanibel Fire District for all it did immediately following the hurricane to assist survivors, and all it has done through the decades.”



The Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to promoting the prosperity of its members and preserving the quality of life of our community. The Chamber plays a key role in facilitating communication and cooperation between business, residents and government to enhance the economic health of the islands. The chamber website receives more than 1.3 million website visits per year. For more information about the chamber, visit or contact John Lai, president and CEO, at 239-472-2348 or [email protected].