The Impact of Ian

How Hurricane Ian has affected Florida and its people.

Matthew Grabowski, Staff Reporter

Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida on Sept. 28, devastating the west coast and leaving many homes, businesses and cities destroyed or heavily damaged. Ian was a category four hurricane, and put power grids out of commission for about 2.2 million Floridians. The storm could take years to recover from, and the cost from wind-related damages alone is at the least $30 billion. Some Troy High School faculty and students who have relatives in the state or have recently been to Florida have information and insight about the hurricane.

Many in the Naples and Ft. Myers area were told that the hurricane would hit farther north, in Tampa Bay. However, it instead went farther south and forced many to shelter in place instead of evacuating. 

Sherri Parks, an English teacher at Troy High School, has family in Florida. Parks said, “My daughter especially talked about the fact that they were told the hurricane was most likely to hit Tampa, which is way far north of her, so they did not evacuate by the time they were told that it was going to hit them directly.” 

Lisa Knudson, an English teacher at Troy High School, also has family in Florida. “My relative sheltered in place. He stockpiled non-perishables and stayed in his home. He started to get low on food, and then he met with the National Guard yesterday. It’s a mess, an absolute mess.” Many places affected by the hurricane have had ration centers set up to distribute food. Large amounts of people need these rations, since many roads and bridges have been destroyed, leaving many unable to get food.

Junior Ishanya Saini was recently in Orlando, an area in Florida which is farther inland and less affected by Hurricane Ian. Saini saw “some trees that were on the ground, but it didn’t look like there was too much damage.” 

Many people have been donating to the Florida Disaster Fund, which, at the time of publication, has raised $35 million for rebuilding efforts. There were also people at churches giving out free goods in cities near Orlando. These efforts are significant, but only a speck in the grand scheme of repairing the damage to Florida’s west coast.

Hurricane Ian has done severe damage to Florida. Billions of dollars in damage from wind and flooding have hurt many people in the state, and forced some away from Florida all together. However, people are coming together and donating what money they can to help those in need who have lost everything.