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Ian is forecast to turn northward on Friday and approach the northeastern Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina coasts.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) informed that Ian was downgraded to a tropical storm in the early hours of Thursday. However, it will continue to produce strong winds, rain, and storm surge in parts of Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Hurricane Ian continued to batter the Florida peninsula with catastrophic storm surges, winds, and flooding on Wednesday night, knocking nearly 2 million customers out of power.
Ian, which made landfall in southwestern Florida in the afternoon as a Category 4 hurricane, has now weakened with maximum sustained winds of 185 km per hour.
The center of the storm is expected to move across central Florida on Thursday and emerge over the western Atlantic by late Thursday. Ian is also forecast to turn northward on Friday and approach the northeastern Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina coasts.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confirmed that all 67 Florida counties have been in an emergency since Monday. Eighteen of them even issued mandatory evacuation orders upon Ian's arrival.
As it passed through this state, the hurricane caused some damage and altered the provision of basic services. The hurricane flooded the HCA Florida Fawcett Hospital in Port Charlotte and destroyed the fourth-floor ceiling.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis urged the state's residents to "be careful going outside." "Make sure to avoid downed power lines, avoid standing water, stay clear of trees, do not drive in standing water and keep generators 20 feet outside of your home," he tweeted.