Debunked! Conspiracy theorists claim government 'created' Hurricane Ian to 'kill' anti-vaxxers in Florida

Debunked! Conspiracy theorists claim government 'created' Hurricane Ian to 'kill' anti-vaxxers in Florida
Conspiracy theorists claimed that the government created Hurricane Ian to kill anti-vaxxers in Florida (Getty Images)

The internet never fails to surprise or even disgust at certain times. Conspiracy theorists have now claimed that Hurricane Ian was “engineered” by the government in order to kill anti-vaxxers in Florida. The inflated claim appeared on Instagram earlier before spreading across other social media platforms.

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According to a post by Instagram user Alex Jeffrey, "Satan" persuaded people against lockdowns and vaccinations into moving to Florida. Then the government-created storm wiped out those "fighting for freedom" once they arrived in Florida, a state that was very lenient during the Covid pandemic.

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“The ‘storm of the century’ as it is being called is unfortunately another one of many examples of how the government engineers weather to completely destroy places and as always they will use predictive programming to show you they’re going to do it in advance,” the post claims.


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The post gained over 500 likes and numerous comments in less than a week. However, this is mostly hot air and balderdash. Weather experts told USA TODAY that it was impossible for anyone to engineer a storm. Ian has no relationship to the pandemic either. According to Jase Bernhardt, a hurricane preparedness researcher at Hofstra University, no one has the ability to create a storm, especially a tropical cyclone the like of Hurricane Ian. Charles Konrad, the director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Southeast Regional Climate Center, agreed with it.

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“A hurricane has just an incredible amount of energy connected with it," said Konrad. "It’s equivalent to like a 10-megaton nuclear bomb that goes off every 20 minutes. And that's just a typical hurricane, and of course Ian was a very strong hurricane. There's no way that you could bring that much energy in.”

Furthermore, "several atmospheric and marine conditions must be met for a tropical cyclone to form," Maria Torres, a National Hurricane Center spokesperson, told USA TODAY. "A cyclone starts after a pre-existing disturbance of showers and thunderstorms grows in time over a warm open ocean. If the winds in the mid-levels of the atmosphere are low, the disturbance can strengthen and develop into an organized area of low pressures with winds greater than 40 mph," Torres said. "As winds increase up to 74 mph and the center becomes more defined, this is when the storm is classified as a hurricane."

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According to the outlet, Bernhardt said that Ian initially began as a cluster of thunderstorms over the Atlantic Ocean, strengthened over the warm Caribbean Sea, became a hurricane near Cuba and touched its maximum intensity over the warm Gulf of Mexico waters just before reaching Florida. 

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