TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Tampa International Airport suspended all operations at 5 p.m. Tuesday due to Hurricane Ian.

Stranded passengers were forced to leave the airport and go to hotels and county shelters.

“I was actually supposed to fly home yesterday and I’ve been at the airport since 7 p.m. Monday. My flight kept getting delayed, delayed until it finally got canceled early around 3 o’clock or 4 o’clock Tuesday, so I’ve been in airport since,” said Demitrus Andrews, who was trying to get home to Michigan before Hurricane Ian hit, but was forced to ride out the storm at a county shelter. “I’m stuck. It’s kind of scary,” he said.

Officials said the closure will allow the airport to prepare the airfield and terminals, including securing jet bridges, ground equipment, and any remaining aircraft.

The airport, including the main terminal, airsides and parking garages is closed to all visitors.

TPA said it will coordinate the airport reopening with its partners based on roadway safety, facility readiness and staffing.