Hurricane Ian Expected to Impact Florida This Week

UPDATE: Disney World will be conducting a phased reopening of the theme parks and Disney Springs on September 30th. Click here for more information.

Despite what its solar nickname implies, Florida isn’t always the Sunshine State.

It even rains in Disney World!

Just recently we’ve seen flood advisories in Disney World, along with ground stops and flight delays issued at Orlando International Airport. Not only that, but we’ve been monitoring the weather in the tropics and keeping you updated on what might impact your Disney World trip. And now, it looks like one weather system in the Caribbean could potentially be coming for Florida — and Disney World. 

We’re not out of the woods just yet, as Hurricane Season isn’t quite over. And now, a weather system in the Caribbean could come close to Florida sometime next week.

Toy Story Land in Hollywood Studios


According to the National Hurricane Center, a “tropical wave” has developed that has already brought thunderstorms and heavy rainfall to various countries in the Caribbean.

U.S. Navy Hurricane Specialist Dave Roberts stated, “Upper-level winds are currently inhibiting development, the upper-level wind pattern ahead of the system is forecast to become a little more favorable in a couple of days, and a tropical depression is likely to form at that time.”

This could be what next week looks like!

Right now, the tropical wave is anticipated to move west-northwestward and hit the central Caribbean later this weekend. There’s a 70% chance it’ll become a storm in the next two days, and a 90% chance it’ll form within the next five.

Spaghetti models show several different paths, but most show the system traveling over Cuba and heading to Florida by next week according to the Orlando Sentinel.

©NOAA, National Hurricane Center via the Orlando Sentinel

The current NHC Director cautioned people not to speculate, but did share that it is likely to become a hurricane while still in the Caribbean.


As of the NOAA’s 5PM advisory on September 23rd, the storm has become Tropical Depression Nine and could eventually become Hurricane Ian.

NOAA notes that the storm is expected to approach Florida “at or near major hurricane strength, with the potential for significant impacts from storm surge, hurricane-force winds, and heavy rainfall.”

The current forecast shows the cone encompassing much of Florida.


NOAA lists the “earlier reasonable arrival time of tropical-storm-force winds” as Monday at 8PM near the bottom of Florida, and Tuesday at 8AM near more of Central Florida.


A state of emergency has been declared for various Florida counties, including Osceola County, which is one of the counties within which parts of Disney World are located.


Here is a look at the storm as of 5PM EST on September 24th. The storm has strengthened and is now Tropical Storm Ian. It is expected to intensify during the weekend and Central Florida is still projected to be in the cone of the storm. DeSantis has also declared a state of emergency for the entire state of Florida. The cone has shifted to the west a bit.



As of 8AM on September 25th, the storm has shifted back to the east.

The storm is expected to strengthen into a hurricane today. So we will be on the lookout for updates. Disney World has not yet commented on the storm, so we will let you know if and when they do.

The weather in Orlando today should be around 89 degrees with a 30% chance of rain. Tomorrow that chance of rain is expected to increase to 40%, according to Click Orlando.

Here is a look at the 11AM update for the day.


And here’s a look at the 5PM update.  At this time, a tropical storm watch has been issued for the Lower Florida Keys.


You can see a good visual of the movement of the storm below.


As of 8AM on September 26th, the storm has officially been upgraded to Hurricane Ian.


By Tuesday, September 27th, Hurricane Ian has strengthened to a Category 3 storm. Several parts of Florida are under Hurricane Watch including Disney World.


By Wednesday, September 28th, the storm has been upgraded to a Category 4 with reports of Category 5-strength winds.


Hurricane Ian made its way through parts of Orlando and ultimately dumped over a foot of rain on Disney World. Various areas of Orlando and other surrounding areas experienced flooding, with even some roadways leading to the airport having been flooded.

Ian was downgraded to a Tropical Storm, but later strengthened to a hurricane again over the Atlantic. It is expected to impact South and North Carolina. Ongoing major-to-record river flooding is expected to continue across parts of central Florida.


Disney World announced they would be closing their theme parks and water parks for September 28th and 29th. Disney Springs will be closed on September 28th, and likely September 29th as well.

UPDATE: Disney World will be conducting a phased reopening of the theme parks and Disney Springs on September 30th. Click here for more information.


So, what can you do if you’re planning a trip to Disney World and think you might get caught in a hurricane? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

Rainy Day in EPCOT

Here’s what you should do if you’re stranded in Disney World due to severe weather (among other things!), and you can even check out our must-have items for Hurricane Season here. Plan around potentially bad weather and see the worst times to visit Disney World here.

Be sure to stay tuned to AllEars for the latest news that could impact your Disney World visit!

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Has your Disney trip ever been impacted by a hurricane? Let us know in the comments!

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