Wednesday, November 30

Hurricane Ian storm surge may reach 10-feet, swamp parts of Tampa Bay

hurricane Ian’s forecast path northward near the Florida coast threatens millions, especially its potentially deadly and devastating storm surges that could push into bays and streams, flooding homes and businesses thousands inland.

“This would be the kind of life-threatening storm surge that would be kind of our worst-case scenario for the Tampa Bay area,” Keily Delerme, a National Weather Service meteorologist, told USA TODAY on Monday.

It’s a nightmare weather scenario officials have feared for years for one of the nation’s large and fastest-growing metropolitan areas.

Far to the north, in Port Aux Basques, Newfoundlandon Monday, one woman who experienced Hurricane Fiona’s storm surges first hand, spent the day reflecting on her newfound respect for its dangers.

Shocking videos over the weekend showed Fiona’s surge ripping into the town and dragging homes into the sea, even after it was downgraded from a hurricane to a post tropical cyclone. Storm arises claiming the life of one woman.

Jocelyn Gillam was standing in her yard talking to her brother-in-law when the initial surge arrived.

“I looked up and saw the water coming with a vengeance,” Gillam told USA TODAY Monday. “It knocked me off my feet.”

Muddied in shades of browns and beiges, the moving water pushed her under a Jeep, she said, where she quickly thought to grab onto a bar and hold on as tight as water rushed over her.

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