Fact Check-Clip of Fox News anchor issuing warning about a hurricane dates from 2016

A 2016 clip of former Fox News anchor Shepard Smith warning about Hurricane Matthew ahead of its landfall in October that year has resurfaced online in 2022 after Hurricane Ian knocked out power in Cuba, with Floridians preparing for its approach. Some shared the clip of Smith in September 2022 without realising that the footage was old.

The footage shows Smith standing in front of a weather map of Florida. He can be then heard saying: “This moves 20 miles to the west, and you and everyone you know are dead - all of you - because you can’t survive it. It’s not possible unless you’re very, very lucky. And your kids die too.”

One profile shared the clip via Twitter on Sept. 27, 2022, with the footage gathering more than 7 million views at the time of writing (here).

While some were aware that the forecast was made years earlier, others shared the clip as if it was about Hurricane Ian.

One user shared the clip via Twitter on Sept. 27 and said: “So things are under control?” (here).

Another said: “To my friends and fam in Florida/South Carolina. Y’all be safe and don’t take any chance of trying to push thru this one” (here).

Other examples of the clip shared as Hurricane Ian made landfall can be found (here), (here), (here).

The clip is not recent and is not connected to Hurricane Ian. The footage dates from a broadcast filmed in October 2016 when Shepard Smith worked for Fox News and was recorded ahead of Hurricane Matthew’s landfall.

The lower-third also refers to Hurricane Matthew, not Hurricane Ian.

The clip was covered by external outlets at the time, including Business Insider and ABC News (here), (here).

In 2016, Hurricane Matthew - which briefly strengthened to the maximum Category 5 intensity - killed more than 1,000 people in Haiti, and left more than 30 dead in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas (here).

Shepard Smith left Fox News in 2019 and now hosts a show on NBC titled ‘The News with Shepard Smith’ (here).

Hurricane Ian strengthened to a Category 4 hurricane early on Wednesday (Sept 28) the U.S. National Hurricane Center said, later adding that it expected it to weaken somewhat after reaching land (here).


Missing context. The footage dates from 2016 and was filmed ahead of Hurricane Matthew’s landfall not Hurrican Ian.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.