Storm surge from Hurricane Ian is a real concern for people across coastal areas of Florida.
Forecasters now project a storm surge of 12 to 18 feet will strike the coast from Englewood to Bonita Beach. The National Hurricane Center also projects that 12 to 18 inches of rain could fall in a swath along Interstate 4.
Hurricane Ian officially made landfall as its eye crossed near Cayo Costa, Florida, around 3:05 p.m. ET Wednesday. The storm was producing top sustained winds of 150 mph.
A storm surge can occur before during or even after the center of a storm passes.
The wind-driven water is extremely powerful. It can leave roads impassable. Experts say a 1-foot-deep storm surge can carry a car off the road.
Storm surges can also cause power outages. People in areas where there is a storm surge occurring should make sure electrical devices are not wet before plugging them. They are also encouraged to wash their hands with soap and water if they have come into contact with floodwater.