Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida early Wednesday, sowing destruction along its path as its force reached the brink of Category 5.
Initial satellite images of Hurricane Ian shared on social media show the jaw-dropping scale of its path. Though official reports still have the storm at a Cat. 4, winds in and around southwestern Florida topped off at 155mph, just shy of the 157mph required to reach the Cat. 5 designation.
No memes today.
Good luck, Florida. pic.twitter.com/ZNA4oABcY6
— Stormchasernick (@stormchasernick) September 28, 2022
The eyewall of the storm reportedly passed over Sanibel Island earlier today, with footage showing nothing by debris, rushing water, and a palm tree almost bent in two.
I have not heard from a source that decided to stick it out in a bit. Praying they are alright. Phone service could be down.pic.twitter.com/3cvng54E9d
— Moshe Schwartz (@YWNReporter) September 28, 2022
Across the bridge from Sanibel, the ocean flew over the fences at what appears to be a hotel or private home. One man thought it smart to go out there to report on the catastrophe.
This is what 140-160 MPH winds look and sound like. This is Fort Myers across the bridge from Sanibel. There’s a reporter out there. I fear he’s about to get hit by a metal pool sign that has come lose. I’m going to find him and I’ll be back. Don’t go outside. #hurricaneian pic.twitter.com/HgES4xj7Dh
— Céline McArthur 🇺🇸 (@CelineTVNEWS) September 28, 2022
Over on Instagram, Rogan O’Handley posted a graphic video of a downed powerline unleashing Hell as it came into repeated contact with ocean water (and likely all the debris and toxins the storm picked up on it’s way onto land).
View this post on Instagram
The Naples fire department shared a stunning image of palm trees almost bent in double as a storm surge drowned out what appears to be the entirety of the ground-level around a set of apartment building.
This is a picture of Naples, Florida from the fire department. pic.twitter.com/NYDaGMKuCf
— Dave Bondy (@DaveBondyTV) September 28, 2022
Similar scenes were spotted in Fort Myers, where the ocean breached the shoreline and now makes up a majority of the streets. Judging by how the palm trees are swaying and the water is rushing, it doesn’t look like it’ll be receding any time soon.
— Kaitlin Wright (@wxkaitlin) September 28, 2022
Video of the storm surge was taken from Fort Myers by the Weather Channel, showing the water reaching six feet in depth and rushing through buildings. The speed of the water can’t really be determined from this video, but my goodness does it look fast.
*RARE* first person view of storm surge. This camera is 6 feet off the ground on Estero Blvd in Fort Myers Beach, FL. Not sure how much longer it keeps working. You’ll see it live only on @weatherchannel #Ian pic.twitter.com/WwHtvgVxjY
— Mike Bettes (@mikebettes) September 28, 2022
At least three clowns attempted to swim in the ocean around Fort Myers as Hurricane Ian entered into view. I wrote a fairly scathing editorial on their behavior, which bordered on a form of Darwinism that sometimes is just best left alone. (RELATED: ‘I Want To Focus On The Here And Now’: Top Biden Official Calmly Shuts Down Don Lemon)
New video just in from Fort Myers, FL shows swimmers getting into the storm surge as Hurricane #Ian approaches.
This is EXTREMELY dangerous. I can’t believe I have to say this…. DO NOT GET INTO THE WATER! pic.twitter.com/jsoUPvX8uC
— Zach Covey (@ZachCoveyTV) September 28, 2022
No matter what you do today, take a moment to pray for Florida. Hurricane Ian only just landed, and there is no telling how much longer it’ll last.