Concern In Palm Beach County As Residents Ignore Evacuation Orders
Palm Beach County officials say residents in evacuation zones need to heed mandatory evacuation orders and go inland immediately.
The orders are in effect for people who live in mobile homes and flood-prone areas, as well as people in Evacuation Zone B. That’s the barrier islands separated from mainland Palm Beach County by the Intercoastal waterway.
Officials say the orders affect about 150,000 Palm Beach County residents, but only 4,100 people were in shelters as of 2 p.m., according to the Palm Beach Post.
Bill Johnson, director of Palm Beach County Emergency Management, says residents who stay in evacuation zones might see three to four feet of water.
"It’s a category four storm, so add three to four feet plus the wave action. So you can just imagine what they’ll have in their home," Johnson said.
Palm Beach County will not dispatch emergency services personnel like police and paramedics once winds exceed 40 miles per hour. Thirteen shelters -- including shelters for people with pets or special medical conditions -- are open in the county.
Johnson says evacuate now because high winds will soon begin to make driving dangerous. Palm Tran bus services ended at noon.