One if by land, two if by air: Irma evacuees flee to Carolinas

People forced to leave the Caribbean and Florida are finding their ways onto Charlotte-area roads.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - As Irma inches closer to the Florida coast, more and more evacuees make their way to the Queen City.

The mood at Charlotte Douglas as evacuees arrived: one of relief and fear rolled into one.

As more than a million people leave Florida & Georgia, Reggie Girouard is on his way to the Sunshine state.

"I'm worried," he told NBC Charlotte reporter Evan West.

I probably won't have a Home come Sunday night Monday morning. I have a good feeling [about that]."

Reggie will stay in Orlando with his mother, who is elderly and unable to evacuate. He's also concerned about his home in South Florida.

"It's going to get tore up. I went through a 12 years ago and said 'never again.' Here I am," said Girouard.

While Reggie Girouard heads south, most are driving north. The roads around Charlotte are congested and only filling up with all the visitors flying in, like Michelle from Melbourne Beach.

"I did want to stay but I have children that did not want me to stay, they booked me a flight home," said the Grandmother.

Peter and Carly Walton's vacation to Puerto Rico was interrupted by Irma. 

"There was no power between us and the airport," said Peter.

A few days of being stranded in the dark is nothing after 15 years of marriage, but Irma's toll on the island left an impact with the Waltons.

"We walked the beach yesterday and there was just debris, shoes and trash, fishing nets and you name it and it's just on the beach, scattered everywhere," recalled Peter.

The devastation could be a preview of what's to come along the Florida coast.

"God bless everyone."

© 2017 WCNC.COM


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