Opening the floodgates

Skyler Glenn

By Sophia Canabal, Hagerty High School

When Hurricane Ian hit Florida’s southwest coast with 150 mph winds and relentless rainfall, the state entered a state of emergency. Starting on Wednesday, Sept. 29 and continuing through Thursday, the storm drifted over Central Florida, prompting Seminole County to close its schools on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Due to the fallout from the storm, first quarter exams were rescheduled, and although the county deemed bus routes clear enough to provide transportation the following Monday, some students could not attend school that Monday, trapped in their neighborhoods by the remaining floodwater. In fact, a large part of Lockwood Boulevard had to be closed all weekend.
While some were huddling at hurricane parties, expecting a mild storm, others prepared for potential damage. Nobody, however, expected the extreme flooding that arrived on the days following the hurricane. As the Econlockhatchee River overflowed with rainwater following severe flooding along the St. John’s River, Florida’s major waterways, Seminole County’s neighborhoods quickly followed suit. By Friday morning, flooding reached its peak, leaving Oviedo underwater. Read the stories of students and staff as they recount the aftermath of Hurricane Ian.

This story was originally formatted as a Grid. Click on the links below to view the Grid chapters. 

Orange County: Principal Robert Frasca

Winter Springs: Teacher Erin Foley

Riverside: Junior Savannah Towne

Twin Rivers: Preston Rupert, Matteos Ariosa

Deltona: Freshman Alyse May

This story was originally published on Hagerty Journalism Today on October 14, 2022.