September 30, 2022

Hurricane Ian Hitting The Carolinas With High Winds, Flooding Rains

Hurricane Ian made its third and final landfall near Georgetown, South Carolina, on Friday afternoon as an 85 mph category one hurricane. The system produced a top-three storm surge in Myrtle Beach, and 90+ mph winds in Charleston Harbor. Ian will steadily weaken as it pushes inland, but the high winds and flooding rains will push through the Carolinas into Saturday.

The hurricane hitting the Carolinas is a far cry from the hurricane that slammed into southwestern Florida on Wednesday afternoon. Ian made landfall on the verge of category five strength, with its destructive winds pushing a devastating storm surge into the coast. 

Even though this isn't a powerful storm anymore, Ian is still a large and formidable hurricane. The footprint of its tropical storm force winds stretches more than 400 miles from one end to the other.

There's a lot of energy moving into the southeastern United States today, and judging by the lackadaisical view folks who live around here are taking with this storm, the extent of the winds and power outages may come as a surprise.

Hurricane Ian will be one of those storms that doesn't immediately wind down once it hits land. Tropical storm warnings and wind advisories stretch all the way to the Appalachian Mountains in anticipation of 40-50+ mph winds through Saturday. Winds this strong will lead to tree damage and power outages throughout the region. 

Flash flooding from heavy rain will remain a concern into Saturday morning for much of the region. We could see an additional 3-5 inches of rain in many spots, especially across South Carolina and the bulk of central North Carolina.

The system will be a mere ghost of its former might by Saturday, but its remnants will still linger around the Mid-Atlantic through the early workweek, bringing occasional bouts of rain to the region. We should see ex-Ian finally clear out by Tuesday, where it could seed the development of a weak nor'easter that heads toward the Canadian Maritimes.

[Satellite Image: NOAA]

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I graduated from the University of South Alabama in 2014 with a degree in political science and a minor in meteorology. I contribute to The Weather Network as a digital writer, and I've written for Forbes, the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang, Popular Science, Mental Floss, and Gawker's The Vane. My latest book, The Skies Above, is now available. My first book, The Extreme Weather Survival Manual, arrived in October 2015.