Hurricane Ian wreaked havoc in Florida after making landfall around 3 pm. However, there were many residents who decided to face the storm as it made landfall. Despite furious swells that soared as high as 18 feet, several Florida people were seen defying fate by braving Hurricane Ian to wakeboard, wave American flags, and even swim in flooded cities.
Despite potentially life-threatening circumstances, some careless Floridians ignored prudence while the majority of the state prepared for the storm. One man was seen even jet skiing just before Hurricane Ian made landfall. He may be brave but many called it foolishness given that he could have died.
The unidentified jet skier caught the attention of WFLA reporters who were in Sarasota Wednesday morning to cover the approaching storm. Hours before the storm was set to make landfall as a Category 4 hurricane, the man was caught on camera jet skiing in the turbulent waters of the John Ringling Causeway.
The hurricane hit Cayo Casto around 3 pm in the afternoon. As it approaches the peninsula, it is now bringing devastating storm surges, gusts, and floods to sections of the state.
The southwest shore of the peninsula, where the storm’s force at the time was a Category 4, was where most of the offenders were spotted. As the water levels rose quickly, nearby residents raced to shelters or became stuck on rooftops but some decided against it and risked their lives.
Several of the daredevils had to be saved by rescue teams after disobeying orders from local authorities including Governor Ron DeSantis to stay put and wait out the storm just because of their foolish antics.
In Fort Meyers, where floods of more than six feet almost resulted in power outages on Wednesday, two ostensibly dimwitted daredevils braved the waves off the coastal city despite an unstoppable stream of water.
A surveillance camera captured the swimmers’ foolish excursion on a pier off Estero Boulevard that overlooked the Atlantic. A Twitter user going by the name @setzeus later posted the video online.
“Category 5 & these idiots are out tempting fate,” the user captioned the video, which shows the underpowered swimmers being fully overpowered by waves fueled by the storm surge. Officials issued a warning before their act that the hurricane would strengthen to a Category 5 threat.
A timestamp on the film indicates that the swimmers’ antics occurred shortly after 10 am, immediately after the state’s southwest coast was hit by the then-Category 4 storm. Residents of Sarasota, a coastal city, also suffered high-speed gusts and some minor floods a few miles to the north.
The man who decided to ride his jet ski into the then-raging ocean was also almost about to die. In spite of strong swells and crashing waves, the unidentified man was seen bouncing on the water in a video posted on social media by Twitter user Hally Leadbetter.
Another video footage, posted by Boston 25 meteorologist Jason Brewer, showed a completely flooded home in the adjacent Naples, where flooding was so bad that authorities had to impose a curfew starting at 10 p.m.
Some daring Floridians are seen paddleboarding in the surge-fueled surf in the coastal city in other recently discovered images, clearly unaware of the scale of the calamity taking place all around them.
After numerous people had to be rescued from the rapidly rising floodwaters as a result of the conduct, Naples Mayor Teresa Heitmann pleaded with residents to stay inside.
The storm is projected to continue to be highly deadly Thursday as it moves inland toward the center of the state, bringing with it the previously mentioned floods and life-threatening storm surge.