Ian Officially Reaches Hurricane Strength as It Heads Toward Florida

by Tia Bailey
ian-officially-reaches-hurricane-strength-as-it-heads-toward-florida
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Florida was hit with a hurricane watch early this morning (Monday, September 26) after Ian officially reached hurricane strength. Both Florida and Cuba are in the line of fire for the storm.

The storm is the fourth hurricane of the “2022 Atlantic hurricane season,” according to AccuWeather. The publication also warns that the storm is only going to get stronger from here.

AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Adam Douty provided more information.

“A quick uptick in strengthening is expected early this week as Ian moves into the western Caribbean, where low wind shear and very warm water are in place. This will raise the likelihood of significant impacts in the western Caribbean, and eventually the United States,” he said. “By Tuesday, Ian may be a dangerous major hurricane.”

As of this morning, winds in the storm have picked up to around 75 miles per hour. This past Saturday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis declared a pre-landfall state of emergency. He encouraged residents to prepare for the storm’s impacts. Additionally, he shared that both the National Guard and power crews would help with the landfalls and power outages the storm may cause.

While several areas will be hit, it looks as though some of the worst parts will affect western Cuba, according to AccuWeather. Yesterday, a hurricane warning was issued for the area after learning this.

Many have already begun to prepare for the storm.

Hurricane Ian Postpones NASA Rocket Launch

The threat of the storm, back before it was even confirmed to reach hurricane strength, has derailed NASA’s rocket launch to the moon.

Already having been postponed three times, NASA shared a statement that cited the reason for this time as Hurricane Ian. The rocket was supposed to blast off this upcoming Tuesday.

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center shared on Twitter: “Artemis I update: @NASA is foregoing a launch opportunity Tuesday, Sept. 27, and preparing for rollback, while continuing to watch the weather forecast associated with Tropical Storm Ian.”

In the statement on the website, they write: “During a meeting Saturday morning, teams decided to stand down on preparing for the Tuesday launch date to allow them to configure systems for rolling back the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft to the Vehicle Assembly Building. Engineers deferred a final decision about the roll to Sunday, Sept. 25, to allow for additional data gathering and analysis.”

They continued: “During a meeting Saturday morning, teams decided to stand down on preparing for the Tuesday launch date to allow them to configure systems for rolling back the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft to the Vehicle Assembly Building. Engineers deferred a final decision about the roll to Sunday, Sept. 25, to allow for additional data gathering and analysis.”

They added that they are staying up to date with information provided by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Space Force, and the National Hurricane Center.

Outsider.com