A million
people in the Florida, United States, are out of power after Hurricane Ian made
landfall on Wednesday as a Category 4 storm. Lee County, home to Fort Myers and
Cape Coral, are most affected, according to PowerOutage.us, with 330,000 power
outages, nearly 70% of all power consumers. At Collier County, nearly 151,000
customers are out of power. Sarasota County, which includes Sarasota and Siesta
Key, have 182,000 customers in the dark.

Water levels
in Fort Myers has continued to rise even after Hurricane Ian made landfall. The
storm surge is pushing inland and water levels are already over 6 feet for the
last seven hours as strong winds push Gulf of Mexico onshore.

Also Read | Florida Man surfs through street as state braces for Hurricane Ian: Watch

Ian touched Florida at Cayo Costa, an island of Florida’s coast, and is expected
to move towards the mainland. Weather scientists had anticipated the storm to
rise to Category 5, which is classified as ‘life-threatening’, but according to
the US National Hurricane Centre (NHC), the storm remains at Category 4. The
storm is expected to turn weaker as it passes through Florida.

But in an
abundance of caution, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster declared a state
of emergency wary of Hurricane Ian’s potential impact on the state. “It’s still
too early to know exactly how Hurricane Ian will affect South Carolina, but
preparations at the state level are well underway, and this declaration of
emergency is a step in that process,” McMaster said in a statement.

The NHC has
said that the storm will bring heavy rain to some states on the East Coast over
the weekend.

Target and Walmart have shut stores on Hurricane Ian’s path in Florida. Target
said in a statement that 70 stores of the department store chain in the state
have been closed while Walmart too announced shutting of some stores. Both
stores saw a rush of customers attempting to stock up on essentials.

Cuba, which
has already suffered the impact of Hurricane Ian, lost all its power
connectivity after the storm. The entire island is in darkness. Work to restore
electricity began in parts of the country on Wednesday morning, The Washington
Post reported.