JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – There is always a plot twist on how major hurricanes impact when making landfall.
A quick preliminary look at how Ian impacted Florida it was the extreme storm surge and not so much the winds. Despite the high winds recorded by Hurricane Hunters (over 150 mph), the reality on the ground was winds that were not even close to those levels.
Yet, the storm surge has seriously impacted southwest parts of the state. Storm surge and a more easterly track across the state as global forecast models didn’t handle Ian’s track shift to the east very well. I suspect those models underestimated the cool-dry air draining down the East Coast of the United States. This set up our local nor’easter conditions. The cool-dry air acted as a barrier, forcing Ian to track more easterly and then northerly.
Jacksonville was impacted but only lightly
Rains will continue light to moderate throughout the day Thursday and gusts of wind will be high enough to cause power loss and tree limbs to fall. Best to remain indoors and not venture out as critters and possibly weakened trees and limbs could still fall without warning. We have seen deaths from these conditions in the past as people have ventured out too soon.
No major “weather moment” is expected from Ian in Jacksonville, just constant winds and rains throughout the day and subsiding overnight.
Beaches will continue to see the greatest impact, with possible power outages throughout Thursday into this evening.
Most rains will fade by 5 p.m. and only scattered downpours are possible thereafter and most of these will be in Georgia.
High tide is taking place at area beaches (noon) and inland tributaries and creeks will crest later this afternoon, most about 2 inches above normal. This is much, much less than Matthew.
CLICK | For current tides