"Greatest Evacuation In History" - 650,000 Ordered To Leave Florida

Tyler Durden's picture

In what spokesman Michael Hernandez describes as "the biggest evacuation in history," Miami-Dade has expanded its mandatory evacuations orders to Zone C, forcing over 650,000 to leave Florida in a "traffic nightmare" as Cat-5 Hurricane Irma bears down.

An earlier order included just Miami Beach, other low-lying and barrier island areas and all mobile-home residents, but as the storm grew in intensity and the cone of uncertainty narrowed, County Mayor Carlos Gimenez issued the order this afternoon expanded to Zone C.

The expansion now covers Zone B, which encompasses Brickell, Miami’s downtown area and South-Dade, including parts of Cutler Bay, Florida City and Homestead. Evacuation orders also touch Zone C, which includes parts of Coral Gables, South Miami, Miami Shores and North Miami Beach.

More than 650,000 residents are reportedly subject to the mandatory evacuation order – that’s up from the 200,000 who were asked to leave to areas outside of evacuation Zones A and B, Wednesday.

Downtown Miami is described as "a ghost town"...

As the mass exodus begins...

Lines at gas stations were evident everywhere...

As AP reports on resident exclaiming:

"There was no gas and it's gridlock. People are stranded on the sides of the highway," she said.


"It's 92 degrees out and little kids are out on the grass on the side of the road. No one can help them."

Irma's eventual path and Florida's fate depends on when and how sharp the powerful hurricane takes a right turn, National Weather Service Director Louis Uccellini said.

"It has become more likely that Irma will make landfall in southern Florida as a dangerous major hurricane," the Hurricane Center said in a forecast discussion Thursday afternoon.

The last Category 5 storm to hit Florida was Andrew in 1992. Its winds topped 165 mph (265 kph), killing 65 people and inflicting $26 billion in damage. It was at the time the most expensive natural disaster in U.S. history.

U.S. Air Force Reserve weather officer Maj. Jeremy DeHart flew through the eye of Irma at 10,000 feet Wednesday and through Hurricane Harvey just before it hit Texas last month.

He said Irma's intensity set it apart from other storms.

"Spectacular is the word that keeps coming to mind. Pictures don't do it justice. Satellite images can't do it justice," DeHart said.

Still unsure...Miami-Dade made it simple...

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11b40's picture

The Big Guy helps those who help themselves.  Good luck, DCRB.

peddling-fiction's picture

Yeah, the Big Guy has lots of judging to do.

bluez's picture

Orlando? Better keep going to W. Virginia. Seriously.

38BWD22's picture



Naah, too late.  My knee hurts (old guys don't like driving as much as when we were younger), and all the roads are clogged.

My best guess is that Orlando will get the equivalent of a Cat 3, the hotels are pretty well built.  We should be OK.  Besides, WV may wind up with more rain (probably not).  


Maybe all of us FL types ought to check in with ZH when the fun starts (about midnight / late Saturday here in Orlando).

Manthong's picture


If you are on a high floor there, the show ought to be pretty good.

But if the picture windows start to bulge.. get the family into the bathroom.

..and oh... try to park the car near the building, and if necessary, in a cripple spot...

don't worry about a ticket... for one thing the cops will be busy doing other things  and for the other the price of a ticket is the least of your concerns.


Manthong's picture

Ever notice how in hotel rooms the bathroom is always immediately to your right or left side when walking though the door?  

The reason for that is that the plumbing risers go up the center of the building and service all of the bathrooms most efficiently   

..elevators and electrical feeds too… strongest place in the building unless someone rigs it like the WTC.


Manthong's picture


I have been watching this thing on the geo satellite.

Holy shitsticks.. it is a big-un.

..and little Jose is right behind it….  

Aerows's picture

Stay next to the wet wall, exactly.  I rode out Katrina in the bathtub with my cat.  Boy, that was fun.

zhandax's picture

MT, Miami Hearald already covered that.  Best place in a high rise is in the stairwell,  But you better be REALLY into cardio; with no power, how many times you want to hump 35 flights of stairs to get your pizza delivery?

spieslikeus's picture

Pro Tip: keep fucking driving. The conditions you describe are only marginally better than what you left. Northwest man! At this point, Arkansas, North Miss. maybe?

imaginalis's picture

That applies to Vegas in particular.

P-51 Stiletto's picture

pRO tIP: You should have stayed wherever it is that you are from. Cause whatever you are, I can tell you what you're not. And that, is a Floridian. Do us all a favor, keep heading North, and don't come back.

Blue Steel 309's picture

I'm still trying to find the clause in the US Constitution that allows the government to order people off their land. The closest I can find is the 3rd Amendment that says the government can't squat on your land.

Son of Loki's picture

It's crucial to get out early as possible. My friend has a small business near Coral Gables with 3 employees. he is a good boss and told everyone at the very start pack up some stuff, throw your kids into the car and drive out. He said he would give them all paid vacations during the storm, well at least half pay.


That's the smart thing to do and his employees are as loyal as can be besides.

11b40's picture

Every good farmer knows to take care of his animals before taking care of himself.  Every good business owner should know to take care of his employees first as well.  Too bad so many don't.

Winston Churchill's picture

Do not lock your horses in the barn.

Polo wraps and leave the stall doors open, they know  what to do naturally.

hedgeless_horseman's picture


Also consider a leather halter with your telephone and address taped on it.  

Offthebeach's picture

Can't remember the 2 hurricains.  Stuart, Florida.   Hutchenson Island.  First one I just drove to Tampa, bought a generator and came back the next day.  90 sumpt'n neighbor stayed and said it wasn't jack.  So I stayed for the second, plus I had the generator.  Water on Indian River was up 20 ft.  Water was up to windows, and coming in under block walls and door untill same three feet in as outside, then the eye came and stars.  Then the eye wall curtained the stars and there was a puff of breeze and in like 30 seconds it was game on again....but the water went down with wind change in like ten minutes.

The new gen got flooded.  but I took out spark, drained the oil and gas.  I had a huge can of WD-40 and soaked it and the coils.  Filled up with new oil gas, fired right up.( Briggs)  

Ran for weeks on that....

Nazi code guys condemned  the wiring cause of the water.  



PrezTrump's picture

The infrastructure cant even handle a multi day evac.  Nothing will work in a zero-notice event.  And it isn't just florida either.

MANvsMACHINE's picture

Have the airlines added flights out of the Florida airports?

Why not help save lives and make buck while doing it? It's what my grandpa always told me.

Ballin D's picture

A lot of people are taking stuff. Lot of trucks and suvs filled to the brim.  Don't have that option on a plane.

Manthong's picture


I heard that Jet Blue was selling $99.00 tickets from any of their departures to anywhere out of Florida...

If that is true, it's pretty stand up of them.

Sanity Bear's picture

All the flights out of Florida were booked up no less than 2 days ago.

Son of Loki's picture

The good news is that Obama has spent trillions on rebuilding infrastructure the past 8 years instead of endless bombing brown strangers overseas and bailing out bankers.



peddling-fiction's picture

...and owing interest on it, to a private company called the FED.

Chaos_Theory's picture

Certainly not guns and ammo.  I worked a long day and the drove all night to get from Melbourne to Ft Walton when the track still looked central and east.  Guess we'll have to drive to Alaska before it's over.

Urban Roman's picture

Note how the few cars on the other side of the highway are coming in the other direction.

In Houston, they have I10 set up to reverse the inbound side on short notice, such that all lanes are heading out of Houston.

(unfortunately this time, Harvey had already trashed and flooded the counties west of Houston .. it's hard to plan for everything)

Aerows's picture

They did that on I-10 out of New Orleans when Katrina was hitting.  It's kind of stupid of Florida not to do that.

11b40's picture

There has to be a way for traffic going the other way, but they will reverse those lanes eventually.  Everything is a trade-off.  Need gasoline, water, building supplies, etc.? How will it get there if all the lanes are reversed?

Nostradumbass's picture


If I lived there I would be gone 5 days ahead...

Mr Hankey's picture

Ahhhm...AHMN,, jus not leavin' til'the Guvnuh,no ,I say,THEGUVNAH!!!sez so.

Milton Keynes's picture

shouldn't people make individual decisions without the government telling them how to live?

gmak123's picture

They were waiting on the hurricane to turn you idiot.

FringeImaginigs's picture

For all the real independent thinkers and actors on here (don't you have to be to be a ZH'er?) you are now slagging on the government for not telling people in time what was a clear known?  Maybe you want the government to pack you a lunch too? And then you want to pray, hm - there's a real solution.

venturen's picture

do you need the government to tell you to rescue your self?

zorba THE GREEK's picture

Taking the plane tonight to Miami, driving down to key west. Chartered a boat to do some fishing outside the reef. Taking all my PMs with me. Hope I don"t have a boating mishap. Wink wink.

Stuck on Zero's picture

I'm pondering heading to Key West to rent a WindSurfer and GoPro. I figure I could get some kind of speed record in a 225 mph wind.

PrezTrump's picture

windsurfer flies 150 miles from key west to everglades. remains found in crocodile.

ImfallibleK's picture

Disneyland. Disneyworld will be GONE

PrezTrump's picture

I'm in the catastrophic zone, but well away from coast.  see ya on the other side

venturen's picture

I am in the catastrophic zone...NJ

The question is how high are you? In Katrina it went 10 miles in?

dumluk's picture

If you cant come up with something better to say than that, pls just STFU......

Nostradumbass's picture

You'll need to study up on /s...

charlewar's picture

Irma could wipe out the mosques which have sprouted in Florida like weeds...

Aerows's picture

I momentarily read that as "mosquitoes".  Armageddon could occur, there will be a cockroach blissfully sitting under a kudzu vine, with a mosquito flying by.

Frodobaggins's picture

Someone's finally doing something about the weather.

Cloud9.5's picture

That pretty much proves liberalism is a religion.  Reason ends where religion begins.