People in parts of three Florida counties faced mandatory evacuation orders Thursday and officials in two other counties issued voluntary orders to leave in advance of Hurricane Irma, a storm that could create one of the largest mass exoduses in U.S. history as additional evacuations are announced.
The eye of the storm is expected to make landfall Sunday morning in the Florida Keys and travel up the Atlantic coastline, according to the National Hurricane Center.
“Do not sit and wait for this storm to come,” Gov. Rick Scott said. “Get out now.”
And Florida residents and visitors are doing just that, causing traffic delays on portions of Interstates 95 and 75 and the Florida Turnpike, according to a Google map of traffic-cam data from the Florida Department of Transportation.