Islamorada residents issued evacuation notice ahead of Irma

ISLAMORADA, Fla. (WSVN) — An evacuation order has been issued for Islamorada residents and visitors, Wednesday morning.

The notice will go into effect at 7 a.m. for tourists, while residents will have until Wednesday night.

People in the island were seen loading up their boats and RV’s as they head north in search of refuge from Irma.

The State has lifted tolls to help those escaping Irma’s path. “I was initially going to stay,” said one man. “However, I have a home in Orlando that I have to protect as well, so I’m going to head north.”

Meanwhile in Key West, people are already on the move. “I think everybody needs to leave,” said one resident fueling up at a gas station. “We’re leaving at 5 o’clock in the morning.”

Other neighborhoods throughout the Florida Keys are quiet and some homes have already been boarded up. “So I’m definitely evacuating, that’s for sure,” said one local.

People who are choosing to stay behind, hope to leave their cars high up in the city parking garage but were turned away because first responders, city and county cars have first priority.

For those who live in Monroe County, there’s a mandatory evacuation for tourists, Wednesday morning, and for residents Wednesday night.

There are no shelters in the county. However, further details on out-of-county shelters will be announced, Wednesday morning.

Lastly, schools are closed until further notice and hospitals are planning to evacuate patients beginning Wednesday morning.

Before evacuating, Monroe County residents are being asked to stop by the Sheriff’s Office to get a decal. This will make the process of returning home easier, once the storm has passed.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott will be in the Florida Keys at 9:15 a.m. to speak on the evacuation process, as well.

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