Hurricane Ian Packing 155 MPH Winds As It Approaches Florida's West Coast

At 800 AM EDT (1200 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Ian was located by Air Force and NOAA Hurricane Hunter data plus Key West radar near latitude 26.0 North, longitude 82.7 West. Ian is moving toward the north-northeast near 10 mph (17 km/h). This general motion with a reduction in forward speed is forecast today, followed by a turn toward the north on Thursday. On the forecast track, the center of Ian is expected to move onshore within the hurricane warning area later this morning or early afternoon. The center of Ian is forecast to move over central Florida tonight and Thursday morning and emerge over the western Atlantic by late Thursday.

Maximum sustained winds remain near 155 mph (250 km/h) with higher gusts. Ian is a category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Ian is forecast to make landfall on the west coast of Florida as a catastrophic hurricane. Weakening is expected after landfall.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 40 miles (65 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 km).

The minimum central pressure is 937 mb (27.67 inches) based on Air Force Hurricane Hunter dropsonde data.


A Hurricane Warning is in effect for...

* Chokoloskee to Anclote River, including Tampa Bay

* Dry Tortugas

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...

* Suwannee River southward to Flamingo

* Tampa Bay

* Lower Florida Keys from Big Pine Key westward to Key West

* Dry Tortugas

* Flagler/Volusia Line to the mouth of the St. Mary's River

* St. Johns River

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...

* Cuban provinces of La Habana, Mayabeque, and Matanzas

* Indian Pass to the Anclote River

* All of the Florida Keys

* Flamingo to South Santee River

* Flamingo to Chokoloskee

* Lake Okeechobee

* Florida Bay

* Bimini and Grand Bahama Islands

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for...

* Florida Keys from the Card Sound Bridge westward to east of Big Pine Key

* Florida Bay

* Mouth of St. Mary's River to South Santee River

Photo: NHC

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