FL - Hurricane Ian: A look at how each county dealt with the oncoming storm.

Sunday, Sep. 25  

11 p.m. — NHC gives first storm surge depth prediction: 4 to 7 feet for most of Lee County. Storm surge watch issued for areas including Cape Coral, Fort Myers Beach and Fort Myers.

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Florida Division of Emergency Management director Kevin Guthrie

Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie says people should check their evacuation zones and stay put if they aren’t in one unless they don’t trust their homes to survive the storm.

Monday, Sept. 26  

5 a.m. — Ian becomes a hurricane with rapid intensification forecast.  

5 a.m. — Hurricane watch issued for west coast of Florida from Englewood to Anclotte River, including Tampa Bay.

Near noon — Manatee issued evacuation orders but effective beginning 8 a.m. Tuesday.  

10:30 a.m. — Lee County declares state of local emergency.  

3:30 p.m. — Charlotte County orders evacuations for Zone A.

5 p.m. — Sarasota and Manatee counties issue hurricane warnings. Lee County government offices shut down.  

5 p.m. — Hurricane watch issued for Bonita Beach to Englewood, including Charlotte County.

7 p.m. Sarasota calls for Zone A evacuations.

Sanibel City Council unanimously approves a local emergency and issues voluntary evacuations.

Tuesday, Sept. 27  

5 a.m. Hurricane warning extended from Sarasota County south to Bonita Beach, which is in Lee County just north of the Collier County line. This warning includes Charlotte County.  

7 a.m. — Lee County orders mandatory evacuations for coastal areas.

Lee County Manager Roger Desjarlais said that barrier islands could be overwashed and people who decide to stay on them “do so at their own peril.”  Desjarlais said the county had considered beginning evacuations Monday but that the storm’s path was still uncertain.  

8 a.m. NHC storm surge depth prediction is now 5 to 10 feet through Bonita Beach.  

8 a.m. — Manatee’s evacuation order in effect.  

9 a.m. — Cape Coral declares local state of emergency, urges residents to evacuate.

10:30 a.m. — Charlotte County orders evacuations to include Zone A and B.

10:45 a.m. — Collier County calls for voluntary evacuations of immediate coastal areas. They make them mandatory later in the afternoon.

11 a.m.— NHC storm surge depth prediction is increased to 8 to 12 feet

11 a.m. — Interim National Hurricane Center Director Jamie Rhome pleas for people in Southwest Florida to prepare.  

“The thing that is most pressing to me, is we are really starting to lose time for people in the path of this system to take action,” Rhome said. “If evacuations are ordered, you need to heed them. There is not a lot of time to second guess. You need to move out quickly.”  

1:45 p.m. — Lee County orders mandatory evacuations for portions of inland areas.

3:15 p.m. — Sarasota County extends evacuations to Zone B.  

4:50 p.m. Collier orders mandatory evacuation of Zone A.

5 p.m. Hurricane warning issued for Collier County, just south of Lee County. It begins mandatory evacuations for Zone A.  

Around 11 p.m.— Ian undergoes what meteorologists call an eyewall replacement cycle, a phenomenon that occurs when extreme pressure pushing on the eye of the storm causes it to collapse and a new, usually larger, eye forms. It extends the range of most damaging winds and adds to the overall size, meaning more winds to push more storm surge on shore.

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