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Hurricanes Are Really Bad for Aircraft

By Ian Brown, EAA 657159, Editor - Bits and Pieces, Board member - EAA Canada Council

Significant damage to the hangar and to the aircraft next to me

November, 2022 – When Hurricane Ian approached KVNC in Venice, Florida, my aircraft was there on a tie-down. I asked my friendly aircraft mechanic down there, Andre El Ghawi, if there was a hangar spot available and he told me there was but at a premium. It would cost me $350 to get my RV-9A into a hangar for the short time it would take for the hurricane to pass through. I was at first reluctant but as the storm approached I told him to go ahead.

My plane at its tie-down spot

It turns out that Hurricane Ian (yes, a really unfortunate name) was headed just south but the north edge of the eye was a direct hit, with winds of more than 100 mph and torrential rain. I received a report the following day that 80 percent of the aircraft were either damaged or destroyed. Fortunately mine was in the 20 percent that were untouched. Almost all the hangars were demolished or seriously harmed by the strong winds and flying debris. Just take a look at this picture of the aftermath. Many of the hangar doors were blown off as well as significant damage to the interiors of most of them.

After the hurricane – it survived unharmed

The aircraft right next to mine in the same hangar section was blown about and damaged as you can see in this next shot.


You can imagine the extent of the destruction to the whole airport.

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