DeSantis: ‘This is going to be a nasty, nasty day, two days’

Source: Hot Air

Hurricane Ian is hitting the west coast of Florida as I write this. The storm intensified overnight and as of this morning it is just barely shy of being a category 5 storm.

Gov. DeSantis has been giving briefings on the storm every few hours. This morning he said, “the strengthening of this over last night has been really, really significant.” He continued, “It potentially could make landfall as a category five but clearly this is a very powerful, major hurricane.” “This is going to be a nasty, nasty day, two days…so this is going to be a rough stretch.”

Even as a strong category 4 storm, Ian was on track to be the fifth most powerful hurricane to his the US in 100 years.

Its winds increased from 120 mph to 155 mph in just eight hours in a jaw-dropping example of rapid intensification. Those 155-mph peak winds only trail four other hurricanes that have crossed the U.S. coastline in historical records:

  • The Labor Day hurricane of 1935, which struck the Florida Keys with 185 mph wind.
  • Camille, which struck the Mississippi Gulf Coast with 175 mph winds in 1969.
  • Andrew, which struck the southeast coast of Florida with 165 mph winds in 1992.
  • Michael, which struck the Florida Panhandle with 160 mph winds in 2018.

Already there have been tornado warnings and possible tornado damage reported.

A tornado also apparently hit a small airport.

But the most serious threat will come from the high winds and the storm surge which could be up to 18 feet.

The surge predictions from the National Hurricane Center soared overnight to 12 to 18 feet for Englewood to Bonita Bay, a forecast so high a new color was added to the National Hurricane Center’s peak storm surge prediction map.

That image above comes from the National Hurricane Center which produces a storm surge risk map. That particular map shows the areas of Fort Myers in the case of a category 4 impact. The color red represents a storm surge of greater than 9 feet.

The winds have pulled the water out of Tampa Bay:

Meanwhile, this video from Marco Island shows how quickly the surge can flood an area.

This guy has been covering the storm by livestream from Pine Island which is about where Ian’s eye wall is making landfall. This morning it was windy.

He is enjoying this a bit too much.

In this clip the water is about even with the sea wall.

And in his latest one you can barely see the wall.

Fort Myers Beach is already flooded.

The first of many rescues.

Gov. DeSantis has given another briefing. He is predicting there will be millions of people without power as the storm moves through. “There’s some storms that really leave an indelible impact…this is going to be one of those historic storms,” he said.

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I’ll try to update this over the next few hours.