Biden warns that Hurricane Ian could be the deadliest in Florida history

At least 17 people have lost their lives and thousands are still trapped in their homes flooded with water

Hurricane Ian made its entry along the west coast of Florida early Wednesday, with category 4 (just one level away from the highest) , strong gusts of rain and wind of up to 250 kilometers per hour, leaving its I passed a desolate landscape of destruction. At least 17 people have lost their lives as a result of the hurricane, according to local authorities.

The combination of strong winds, rain and storm surge from ‘Ian’ has flooded homes, cut off roads and left more than two million people without power, CNN has reported.

Likewise, the United States Coast Guard has carried out 68 rescue operations throughout the state this Thursday , which are included in the 700 rescues announced by the governor of Florida, Ron de Santis, during a press conference.

After Ian has progressively lost strength throughout this Thursday to go from a hurricane to a tropical storm while advancing over central Florida , the weather services have warned that it has regained intensity.

FOTO: Douglas R. Clifford AP

Hundreds of thousands of homes flooded , some of them totally destroyed, more than two million Americans without electricity and another two and a half million who had to be evacuated just hours before the arrival of this unprecedented storm, which many define as “ the greatest catastrophe” ever seen in some areas of Florida”, popularly known as the “sunshine state”.

The sun has shone nothing this week and everything has been taken in its wake by the eye of the hurricane that, baptized as Ian and coming from Cuba, where it left the entire island without electricity, the president of the United States himself predicted that “ could be the deadliest hurricane in Florida history.”


Charlotte County became the first to confirm half a dozen fatalities this Thursday. “Unfortunately, we have six confirmed deaths at this time,” County Commissioner Chris Constance said. “All of our teams now assessing the damage, conducting search and rescue. It is the biggest catastrophe I have ever seen in my life,” Constance added during a televised interview.

These are difficult days for millions of Floridians , who have been forced from their homes, many of them forever. Also for hundreds of reporters who cover the storm from the streets, now flooded until they are totally unrecognizable. Submerged cars and trees mingle with disoriented animals, in startling published images of large alligators swimming aimlessly.

Also without electricity or running water in most homes in affected areas, thousands of people had to be evacuated from their shelters due to structural damage suffered by the devastating effects of the storm. Airports in the area closed their airspace and airlines canceled thousands of flights. More than 2,000 on Thursday, surpassing the previous day, “the worst day for flight cancellations in the United States in recent months” and another thousand flight cancellations planned for this Friday.

On its dramatic northward path, Hurricane Ian moved slowly Thursday from west to eastern Florida , passing through Orlando to return up the coast as a tropical storm and, according to scientific forecasts, to enter again. by land it became a hurricane once again, affecting the states of Georgia and the two Carolinas, North and South.

Joe Biden promised, from the headquarters of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in the US capital, coverage of 100% of the cost of the emergency response efforts necessary to alleviate the consequences of the destructive weather phenomenon.

Hours earlier, early Thursday morning, the White House decided to declare a “major disaster” in the state of Florida, immediately putting funds from the Federal Government into operation for the next 30 days for cleanup work. and reconstruction of the affected areas. “The federal government will also cover most of the cost of rebuilding buildings such as schools and state fire stations,” Biden added.

In addition, the president of the United States announced his “intention” to visit some of the areas most devastated by Hurricane Ian soon together with the state governor, Republican Ron DeSantis, “if he is available,” as confirmed by the Democrat in response to questions. of the journalists.

“Early this morning I spoke with Governor DeSantis and again offered him the fullest federal support,” Biden explained to the press. Already earlier this week, the US president, at the request of DeSantis, had approved the “emergency declaration” prior to the arrival of the hurricane by land “to provide direct federal assistance to the state, emergency protection measures to save lives , including search and rescue, shelter and food,” recalled the US president.

In what is being an unusual gesture of joint coordination between political rivals , increasingly polarized, and little more than a month before the decisive legislative elections in Congress, in which Democrats and Republicans will measure forces to maintain control of both Cameras.

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