DECATUR, Ill. (DTN) — The number 16 may be sweet for some, but farmer Ryan Jenkins will forever associate it with saturated, damaged crops. Hurricane Sally dumped anywhere from 15 to 30 inches of rain across his Florida Panhandle and southwestern Alabama farm on Wednesday, Sept. 16 — exactly 16 years to the day of when Hurricane Ivan, a Category 3 storm, made landfall at nearly the exact spot and nearly the same time of day.
“Ivan has been the hurricane everyone uses as a benchmark here — it did so much damage,” said Jenkins. “Now Sally has torn us up.”
Jenkins, who has been reporting in each week as part of DTN’s View From the Cab project, had what he considered possibly his best cotton and peanut crops ever before Hurricane Sally hit. He often talked about the importance of “not counting his chickens before they’d hatched.”
Hurricane season came early this year and Jenkins had already watched 19 named storms work their way around him or fizzle this summer.