Hurricane Ian causes billions of dollars in damages

Zuzanna Konderak, News Writer

On Sept. 27, Hurricane Ian swept through the Caribbean and southwest United States, causing billions of dollars in damage and resulted in over 100 deaths. Several businesses, landlines, homes, parks, roadways, etc. were totaled and former residents were forced to evacuate in order to reach safety. The places hit by the storm are uninhabitable as of right now.

Like most hurricanes, Hurricane Ian started off as a small tropical storm but quickly spiraled into a Category 4 hurricane. It first struck the Caribbean, where it was still classified as a Category 3 hurricane, but quickly transitioned once it moved through Cuba. It destroyed entire towns, roadways, homes, and caused a total of 200 million in damages in Cuba alone. 

Before the storm hit the Caribbean, counties had to prepare for the worst. Starting in mid-September, an alert of a major tropical storm was issued to millions. Soon after, shelters were set up to help those especially vulnerable to the storm and food had to be stored somewhere the storm couldn’t reach. Most people either had to find a way to protect themselves, or had to evacuate and leave everything behind. Unfortunately, many were left stranded due to roadways getting blocked and airports being shut down. 

On Sept. 28, Hurricane Ian caused a major power outage in Cuba. For two days, millions of Cubans had no electricity at all. People didn’t have access to the Internet and light and were unable to perform daily tasks, causing an outrage. Protests started forming, and within a few days, electricity was finally restored. 

Before the power outage in Cuba, Florida was in a state of emergency. Several shelters were formed and several millions were ordered to evacuate. While some were able to escape the storm, others hoarded the necessary supplies to survive. Schools were closed and many airports were forced to stop operations for the duration of the storm. 

Early in October, a total of 126 people died in the storm. The places that were hit by the storm took devastating damage, causing many to be stranded or missing. Sources say that Hurricane Ian was one of the most fatal hurricanes to ever hit Florida. 

During this time, many relief efforts started. Donations of food, clothes, money, toiletries, helped those in need and volunteers helped at shelters for victims of the storm and provided support. These efforts proved to be effective as many people are starting to transition back, although there is still a long way until things can go back to normal.