Forcing evacuation orders for 2.5 million Floridians, Hurricane Ian is in the open Gulf, where conditions are prime for it to grow perhaps even stronger than originally expected.

Those on the ground in Cuba, where Ian made landfall late Monday, have been sharing pictures of the devastation left in the storm's wake. Several of the pictures show entire trees uprooted, buildings in shambles, and property severely damaged.

Hurricane Ian made landfall on the western edge of Cuba as a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds at 125 mph. It lost a little bit of power after traveling over land, but it is expected to continue through the Gulf and increase in power before slamming into the western coast of Florida.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has been encouraging Florida residents to heed evacuation orders.

“There’s still uncertainty about with where that exact landfall will be, but just understand the impacts are going to be far, far broader than just where the eye of the storm happens to make landfall,” DeSantis said in a public statement.

“When you have 5 to 10 feet of storm surge, that is not something you want to be a part of,” he said. “Mother Nature is a very fearsome adversary, so please heed those warnings.”

The storm is currently expected to move across the state and head up the Atlantic coast, though some models have it staying on land as it moves upward. However, it is currently projected to lose its power quickly as it stays over land.

Hurricane Preparation, What Are the Items You Didn't Think Of?

When there is word that a hurricane might threaten the Gulf Coast, we start thinking about what items we need to make life bearable if we end up stuck at home without electricity and internet.
In addition to these creature comforts, we also need to think about the many things that we would need to take with us if we are forced to evacuate.
While we all immediately think of things like prescription medicines and important papers, there are other things that can come in handy whether we will be stuck at home, at a relative's house, or in a shelter.

Louisiana's Most Devastating Hurricanes

More From 92.9 The Lake