Nearly 7 million asked to evacuate ahead of Hurricane Irma
Nearly seven million people have been asked to evacuate their homes across several states as Hurricane Irma approaches the Florida coast, The Associated Press reports.
The additional evacuation orders were issued overnight, as the powerful storm shifted trajectory on its path toward Florida after devastating several Caribbean islands.
More than 5 million people had already been asked to evacuate in Florida ahead of the storm, and state emergency management officials asked another 700,000 to evacuate, the AP reported Saturday.
Another 540,000 people had been asked to evacuate in eastern Georgia and more than 40,000 in South Carolina, according to the AP.
Irma is expected to make landfall in Florida early Sunday, though officials have warned that severe weather could hit the state as early as Saturday.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) issued stern warnings to people in his state in a press conference on Saturday.
“Evacuate now,” Scott said. “Not tonight, not in an hour, you need to go right now. If you’re in an evacuation zone, leave.”