Irma’s uncertainty over the clock keeps Florida residents and tourists in a race against the clock continuing an unprecedented exodus, starting from the Florida Keys in the southern tip of the country to the north in search of a shelter insurance.
Thousands of motorists have been struggling with stalled motorways and long lines to get gas after the races this week to save their belongings in the face of the fury of the “catastrophic” Irma, which is expected to arrive this weekend at South Florida as a major hurricane.
CNN has calculated this exodus at 660,000 people, which is expected to increase at the insistence of Florida Gov. Rick Scott to continue evacuations.
Colombian tourist Carolina Cardona embarked on the exodus on Thursday morning “alarmed by the news, because it is not something that happens in Colombia,” said Efe.
Cardona said she and her mother and brother had to stop their vacation in Miami and leave for Orlando, in the middle of the state, where they now analyze where to go, with their minds set in Tampa, Savannah, Georgia, or even Washington because of the “uncertainty of where it will hit.”
“The storm is powerful and deadly. Do not ignore evacuation orders,” Scott told a news conference today.
The governor said that the 20 million residents of the state “must be prepared to evacuate” before the arrival of Hurricane Irma.
The governor also offered all the guarantees and assistance to evacuate, including escorting the gasoline tanks by the Florida Highway Patrol.
The cyclone system, which forecasters have described as three times larger than the state, has managed to persuade Floridians to evacuate either by air or land.
The storm surprised tourists, some of whom have been stranded on cruises and then at the airport, and are now also seeking shelter.
Miami International Airport (MIA) is even offering those stranded passengers to transport them to official shelters, which are soon reaching full capacity as they approach Irma.
Even hospitals have offered shelter to women with multiple pregnancy, with at least 28 weeks of gestation, who are experiencing alarms of preterm labor, among other problems.
Jackson Memorial Hospital, Jackson North Medical Center and Jackson South Medical Center in South Florida will welcome future moms four to six hours before the hurricane hits the earth.
As the first hurricane winds approaching Friday night, the streets begin to empty completely before the little favorable change that has shown the hurricane, which has wreaked havoc and a score of deaths on its way through the Caribbean .
“This is a catastrophic storm that has never been seen in the state,” said Scott, who again today spoke with President Donald Trump about federal aid to the state after the impact of Irma.
Trump on Monday approved Florida’s request for an emergency declaration before Irma’s arrival.
“This will free much-needed federal funding and assistance as we prepare for Irma,” Scott said Monday after announcing the aid and after declaring a state emergency in all 67 Florida counties.
“Irma is broader than our entire state and could cause significant and potentially life-threatening impacts on both coasts, coast to coast,” Scott said.
“Regardless of the coast you live on, be prepared to evacuate,” he insisted.