Typically, a man jet skiing across a Florida waterway wouldn’t break headlines, but in this case, Hurricane Ian has made it so that the entire beach is the waterway.
The nation has been watching closely as Category-4 Hurricane Ian made landfall and is rampaging across the western coast of the Sunshine (and blinding rain) State. The catastrophic storm first struck Fort Myers on Wednesday afternoon, bringing with it an 18-foot storm surge and floodwaters that turned streets into swift-water rivers.
Within its small timeframe in the U.S., Hurricane Ian has already made its way to Sanibel Island and Naples, wreaking structural havoc on residential and commercial buildings in the area.
Despite all of this chaos, though, one man decided that there was no better time than to take the ole Sea-Doo for a cruise down the beach. Likely as shocked as they were amazed by the display, a bystander caught sight of the undoubtedly dangerous activity, snapping a video as the man whipped past the palm trees, bowing with the weight of the wind.
According to Hally Leadbetter, USGA golf broadcaster and the Twitter user that shared the clip, the incident took place in Sarasota, roughly two hours north of Naples. So, the man wasn’t in direct contact with the worst of the weather. Even still, taking such a risky choice had to involve a couple of cold ones and nerves of steel.
In the end, the Hurricane-Ian jet skier became another headline in the strange collection of “Florida Man” stories.
Jet Skier Isn’t the Only One to Brave the Waves of Hurricane Ian
When you’ve lived through Florida’s yearly fall storms, a hurricane can very well be less intimidating… at least that’s what it seems to these onlookers who opted for a front-seat view of Hurricane Ian’s fury. This group of storm chasers decided to hang out right beside the retaining wall of a beach in Key West. With phones extended towards the action, they didn’t even hesitate as a huge wave broke right before them – really, not one of them moved an inch! One guy even decided to go shirtless for the occasion.
We don’t know for sure if these folks were Key West locals, but when you choose a photo op over evacuation, you have to have some experience boarding up windows and hunkering down around a radio.
Dangerous as these adventurers’ decisions may be, it does provide a bit of comic relief as Hurricane Ian continues to race across Florida’s coastal cities. Already, the storm has left 650,000 households without power, and according to the state’s Governor Ron DeSantis, this could only be a fraction of the outages that they see. It’s possible that this number could even extend into the millions.
State officials believe that the damage toll could reach $45 billion as Hurricane Ian continues to gain strength and speed.