Earlier hurricane season could impact local businesses

Hurricane season dates could change

SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - The official start of hurricane season is June 1 but that could be changing, as storms have, for the past six years, continued to form before the calendar flips over to June. Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center say this possible change is in order to better prepare local communities.

The weather service, a well as some international organizations, including the World Meteorological Organization, will be meeting next month to consider moving the official hurricane season start date up two weeks — to May 15.

The possible change could also impact the number of tourist traveling to the Suncoast out of fear and lead to hardships for local business. This comes as many locally owned shops are still trying to rebound after the start of the pandemic.

Melanie Dodge, the owner of Siesta Key Wine Bar said that the possibility of an earlier season makes her nervous but she also states that the local business will work together to plan ahead.

“I think we just need to, as business owners, keep each other updated and rely on the community, our locals, and you know other restaurants to keep each others spirits up and just keep each other going so we all know what’s going on in the community,” Dodge explained.

If the change does occur, it will not change the start to the 2021 season but could take effect as early 2022.

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