NAPLES, Fla. — Overwhelming and violent storm surge from Hurricane Ian inundates streets and cars in southwest Florida under several feet of floodwaters Wednesday.
In the exclusive seaside community of Naples, police have issued a curfew until further notice and are warning people to stay off the roads.
“You can’t survive if you try to drive in this kind of weather,” NBC News correspondent Ali Velshi said during a live report Wednesday afternoon.
WATCH: Storm surge from Hurricane Ian floods Naples
Massive storm surge in Naples
Standing on the second floor of the beachfront property, Velshi witnessed waves of fast-moving water spill onto the street below, burying cars under at least five feet of water, leaving only their roofs visible.
Seconds later, boats breaking loose from their moorings could be seen floating down the street.
“All around us, everywhere I look, anything that’s not embedded in the ground at this point, and not in a foundation, is coming loose and floating away,” Velshi said.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, water levels in Naples are more than 6 feet above normal high tide.
Velshi said Urban Search and Rescue teams are stationed in Naples, but because the flooding is so severe, no emergency vehicles can get around to respond to emergencies.
“At this point, we’re now in a situation where nobody’s moving, nobody’s doing anything,” Velshi said. “Everything is shut down for now. There’s nobody out there.”
Just blocks south in the Naples fishing community of Tin City, resident Erik Mogelvang recorded dramatic video of downed power lines sparking a fire in the middle of a deserted intersection.
WATCH: Downed power lines ignite fire in Naples
Downed power lines ignite fires in Naples
According to FPL, more than 159,000 people are without power in Collier County and another 260,000 are without power in neighboring Lee County.
Naples Fire Rescue posted a video on Instagram showing the bay at its station near downtown Naples flooded with several feet of water.
“We’re asking you to find the highest point in your home and stay there,” a firefighter said in the video. “Please do not drive on the roads. It is not safe.”
“Boats and cars are floating everywhere,” WPTV viewer Alex Lore said of flooding and storm surge at Vanderbilt Beach in North Naples.
On nearby Marco Island, police are warning people not to leave their homes, saying all roads and bridges are impassable.
Hurricane Ian made landfall near Cayo Costa in southwest Florida around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday as a Category 4 storm, packing maximum sustained winds of 150 miles per hour, just shy of Category 5 strength.
“It’s not going to let up any time soon,” said WPTV First Alert Weather Chief Meteorologist Steve Weagle. “So water levels should rise in those cities, cities in Southwest Florida.”