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Drone video shows the catastrophic damage left behind by Category 4 Hurricane Ian

Tropical Weather Florida
Posted at 5:46 AM, Sep 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-29 14:40:15-04

Hurricane Ian came ashore Wednesday afternoon in Southwest Florida as a strong Category 4 storm, causing catastrophic damage and widespread power outages.

According to the National Weather Service, the highest recorded winds on the surface were in Cape Coral. A wind gust of 140 mph was recorded there. A number of other towns reported experiencing winds of over 100 mph Wednesday.

Scripps National reporter Drew Snadecki captured drone video of damage in Fort Myers following Wednesday's hurricane. The damage indicated a number of buildings were significantly damaged by the hurricane.

Drone Damage from Hurricane Ian

Officials from the Lee County Sheriff's Office were able to get an overhead look at the damage in the Fort Myers and Cape Coral areas on Thursday.

Hard Hit Lee County

In addition to the violent winds, video showed high water in Cape Coral flooding homes.

Cape Coral Flooding

While the winds subsided by late Wednesday into Thursday, some high water remained in Southwest Florida, complicating the recovery.

Fort Myers Mayor Kevin Anderson said late Wednesday that it could take some time for rescuers to reach storm victims who stayed behind.

"They're going to have to be patient,” Anderson told CNN. “You know, we did evacuation orders. They chose not to follow them. This is what comes with it. We will get to them as soon as we can, as soon as the winds die down, the water subsides, and the roads are clear.”

Fory Myers flooding

One of the hardest hit areas was Naples, where a social media user documented a roof getting blown off a home. There was also a video provided by the Naples Fire Department of firefighters on a jetski performing a water rescue.

Naples Firefighters

Video showed the Naples firefighters performing water rescues in waist-deep water.

Naples Firefighters 2

Images from Venice indicated a theater there was nearly destroyed by the wind.

Venice Theatre

Even miles up the coast in Tampa, the winds caused damage. Video from the Tampa Police Department showed a traffic light falling into a road. There were also reports of trees toppled.

Tampa traffic light