People with Louisville connections deal with the wrath of Hurricane Ian

Most Louisville weather experiences cannot compare to the scope and duration of a major hurricane.
Published: Sep. 28, 2022 at 4:57 PM EDT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Most Louisville weather experiences cannot compare to the scope and duration of a major hurricane.

When Hurricane Ian was making landfall in southwest Florida, a worried Nicole Wallace hunkered down in Sarasota.

“Well, we did lose power a couple of hours ago,” Wallace said. “So, I’m in the dark.”

Unaccustomed to major hurricanes, the Louisville native was riding out the storm on Wednesday in her Florida house. She has sandbags around her home, but a little water still crept in around her patio door.

“It’s been kind of different,” Wallace said. “I don’t know how to prepare really, or when to panic, I guess. A lot of Floridians don’t really panic too much. They’re used to it. But I always feel like I haven’t prepared enough.”

Meagan Shaver left Louisville in July for a job at television station WWSB in Sarasota.

“Even the bridges,” Shaver said. “We have the bridges, the Big Four Bridge and the bridges downtown in Louisville. Here, all the bridges, you can’t even cross them. So once the bridges are shut down, you’re stuck.”

Florida photographer Susan Oliver scrapped plans to come to Louisville.

“And we were going to tour some bourbon distilleries,” Oliver said. “We had the reservations made.”

She had planned to sell her work at the St James Court Art Show. Instead, she evacuated to a hotel room with her husband, father, two dogs and six cats.

Oliver worried on Wednesday about her neighbors who stayed behind in Fort Myers, taking a direct hit from the storm.

“There are so many people who have their houses down on canals very close to the river,” Oliver said. “The storm surge could be over their head, over their roof.”