TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Residents in the City of Tampa could expect to see between 18 and 20 inches of rainwater when Hurricane Ian makes landfall Wednesday afternoon, according to Mayor Jane Castor.

Castor, who spoke alongside ice Chief Mary O’Connor and Tampa Fire Rescue Chief Barbara Tripp, said residents “are not out of the woods yet.”

The mayor said she saw reports of residents walking out on a now water-free Bayshore Boulevard as Ian barreled towards the Florida coast with Category 4 strength winds.

“But that is the calm before the storm,” Castor said. “We are still going to see, more than likely, unprecedented flooding in our area with 18-20 inches of rainwater coming in later this evening and we’re also going to have tropical-storm-force winds and possibly Category 1 force winds here in the Tampa area.”

As of 12 p.m., Hurricane Ian was projected to make landfall in Charlotte County with Category 4 force winds.

“Those who have left Zone A, please do not go back, this is not over, Castor said. “Those who have not left, please heed the warnings and everybody be safe out there.”

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