Hurricane Ian: Severe Flooding, Storm Force Winds Coming To South Florida

By Zuri Anderson

September 27, 2022

Flooded river during persistent heavy rain.
Photo: Getty Images

South Florida isn't in the direct path of Hurricane Ian, but that doesn't mean severe weather isn't coming to the region. Meteorologists expect torrential rain, major flooding, and tropical storm force winds to batter the area as it approaches the Sunshine State.

On top of the Category 3 hurricane, officials said incoming king tides will make conditions even worse, according to NBC 6. This means the rain will have nowhere to go, contributing to potential flooding in a region where waters already swell from normal thunderstorms.

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez announced Monday (September 26) that all permanent water pumps are working, while extra portable pumps will be installed as needed. City crews will be focused on the Brickell area.

“We have created some additional pumping capacity in that area,” Suarez said. “We have to understand that that is in the midst of king tide where we have the highest tides of the year.”

Miami-Dade, Broward, and Monroe counties are under a Tornado Watch until 5 p.m. A tropical storm watch is in effect for inland parts of Broward and Miami-Dade.

All of the Florida Keys are under a Storm Surge Watch, while the Lower and Middle Keys have a Tropical Storm Warning in effect, according to Monroe County officials. A Hurricane Warning is in effect for the Dry Tortugas.

"Severe rain squalls with damaging wind gusts are expected especially in the Lower and Middle Florida Keys. The squalls will create dangerous driving conditions," a Tuesday morning (September 27) update reads. "There is the potential for storm surge flooding 1 to 3 feet above normal high tides."

Miami-Dade, Broward, and the Lower Keys may see on-and-off bursts of rain and strong gusts likely starting Tuesday afternoon, per NBC 6.

Hurricane Ian is on track to engulf most of the state, with the eye traveling over Central and Southwest Florida. The intense storm made landfall in Cuba Tuesday morning as a Category 3 hurricane.

Ian will become the first major hurricane to hit Florida since Hurricane Michael in 2018. Experts believe Ian could become even stronger before making landfall in the Sunshine State.

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