More than 2.5 million people in Florida have been ordered to evacuate as Hurricane Ian strengthens into a Category 4 storm with winds reaching 155 miles an hour, just shy of a Category 5. The storm is projected to make landfall this afternoon dozens of miles south of Tampa Bay, but parts of the state are already facing heavy wind and flooding. On Tuesday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis urged residents to follow evacuation orders.
Gov. Ron DeSantis: “There will be catastrophic flooding and life-threatening storm surge on the Gulf Coast region, and, of course, the highest risk will be in that southwest Florida region from Naples up to Sarasota. There’s also potential for flash flooding and river flooding with 10 to 20 inches across central and northeast Florida.”