Hurricane Ian made landfall along the southwestern coast of Florida near Cayo Costa around 3:05 p.m. ET Wednesday with winds near 150 mph, making it a strong Category 4 hurricane, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The storm is delivering a catastrophic trifecta of high winds, heavy rain and historic storm surge to the state and is set to cause significant power outages and flooding as it moves at a slow pace across central Florida over the next day or two.
Hurricane Ian is tied for the strongest storm to make landfall on the west coast of the Florida peninsula, matching the wind speed of Hurricane Charley in 2004.
Already, over a million Florida utility customers were without power as of 3:45 p.m., according to PowerOutage.us. Officials in Cape Coral and Punta Gorda reported significant impacts, and the storm surge set records for the highest water levels ever observed in Fort Myers and Naples.
“The storm surge is very significant. We’re seeing cars and boats float down the street. We’re seeing trees nearly bent in half,” Frank Loni, an architect from California staying in Fort Myers Beach for the storm, said midday Wednesday. “There’s quite a bit of chaos on the streets.”
Current situation (last bulletin): TC track, Wind buffers (Green: 63-92 km/h, Orange: 93-118 km/h, Red:>118 km/h)
Current Storm Status
Analysis based on advisory number 24 for IAN-22, published on 28 Sep 2022 15:00
- The storm is: active
- Current country: United States, Cuba
- Current position: Lat:26.3 Lon:-82.5
- Alert level at current position: Red
- Basin: Atlantic
- Current strength: Hurricane/Typhoon > 118 km/h
- Maximum sustained winds: 250 km/h (current), 250 km/h (next 5 days)