Widespread destruction left by Hurricane Ian was seen on Saturday, Oct. 1 at Sanibel Island and Fort Myers Beach, Florida.
Footage from both locations showed resorts, homes, boats, and infrastructure damaged by the storm which slammed the state’s Gulf Coast on Wednesday, Sept. 28 as a Category 4 hurricane packing maximum sustained winds of 150 miles (240 km) per hour.
The number of confirmed fatalities from Ian, one of the fiercest storms in U.S. history, rose to at least 50, most in Lee County.
The death toll was expected to climb higher as floodwaters receded and search teams reached more areas initially cut off by the storm.
Fort Myers, a city close to where Ian first made landfall, absorbed a major blow, with numerous houses destroyed.
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Offshore, the popular tourist destination of Sanibel Island was cut off when a causeway bridge was rendered impassable.
As of Sept. 30, some 10,000 people were reported unaccounted for in Florida, according to the state’s emergency management director, who added that many of those were likely safe in shelters or otherwise unreachable because of power and phone outages.
According to officials, some of the heaviest damage appeared to have been inflicted by raging wind-driven ocean surf that rushed into seaside communities and washed buildings away.
By Reuters. (Production: Maria Alejandra Cardona, Marco Bello, Andrea Rodriguez)