Wednesday at 3:05 p.m. ET was the moment the eye of Hurricane Ian officially made its landfall in the U.S., by hitting the barrier island of Cayo Costa, about 89 miles south of Tampa, according to the National Weather Service. Ian was clocked as a Category 4 with 150 mile-per-hour winds, and, as of this writing, remains a very real threat to the homes and lives of Floridians on the state’s west coast.
Here are some examples of the storm’s impact, as it appeared on Twitter. If you are in the affected area and you didn’t evacuate, we hope you’re taking all necessary precautions as you attempt to ride out the storm.
Hurricane Ian batters Cape Coral, Florida
Yeshiva World News reporter Moshe Schwartz tweeted video of Cape Coral, Florida from a spot several stories high, providing a panoramic view of the widespread devastation.
Footage of Hurricane Ian as it hit Fort Myers, Florida
A few hours before landfall, the Weather Channel’s Mike Bettes posted a highlight from a video feed showing flooding in Estero Blvd. in Fort Myers Beach, Florida.
Fort Myers, Florida-based weatherman Dylan Federico posted footage from WINK News headquarters, showing a neighborhood almost completely flooded, including at least one car submerged to the roof.
Federico also documented a frightened kitten stranded on a park bench as the waters rose, but that footage is not for the faint of heart.
@WHGrampa tweeted similar footage documenting the storm surge in Fort Myers Beach.
Harrowing photos of Hurricane Ian’s effects
User @itsbethbooker tweeted concerning photos apparently sent by her mother, who was taking shelter on the second floor of her Fort Myers home while the first floor was completely inundated.
Hurricane Ian’s impact on Naples, Florida
Livecam aficionado @BirdingPeepWx used footage from a camera on Sanibel Island to create a time-lapse that documents 30 minutes of storm surge.
Hurricane Ian’s storm surge in time lapse
Twitter user @llizzarrdd tweeted a video of torrential floodwaters filling the bottom floor and courtyard of a condo building in Naples, Florida. The footage was accompanied by a plea for rescue.
How is Hurricane Ian related to climate change?
Climate change is impacting hurricanes. Some of these impacts are clear, particularly more serious rainfall and historic flooding, along with higher storm surges. Other impacts, like how the relentless warming oceans are affecting how strong these storms grow, are an intensive and ongoing area of research.