Can you tell me about your experience with hurricane Irma, and what you’d suggest to persons or do in the future?
“I evacuated with my family and drove all the way to Tennessee — a 24-hour drive. I was in a small town and I was the only Latina there — people there have never met a Latina — and it was interesting. I would recommend to anyone who hasn’t been in a hurricane before to take the necessary precautions, buy food, water and just stay safe; and if necessary evacuate.”
Anjali Gill, freshman biology major
“I tried to get a flight out back to Colorado but couldn’t, because all of them were booked or they were too expensive. So, my dad flew down here and drove me to Orlando to get a flight out to Colorado. I would recommend getting out as soon as possible and try to find a flight in that moment.”
“My experience with Hurricane Irma was new and eventful because this is the first time I have ever experienced something like a hurricane so, I was a little worried. But, I drove up to Orlando with family and I felt that they were very in control of the situation, so I wasn’t too scared. What I would do to prepare for in future is to have a constant supply of water and basic food because, I did go to Walmart to try to find food overnight and the supplies were sold [out]… and if you’re staying in shelters or at the university, follow the instructions and stay calm during the process because panicking won’t change anything.”
“Overall, my experience with Irma thankfully wasn’t too bad. My hometown; Melbourne, Florida, is really close to the beach, so I thought we would get hit really hard but we only lost power a couple of hours overnight, so it didn’t really affect us. But I know a lot of other people in my hometown who had to move and go inland. Some of their houses flooded and they lost power and haven’t fixed that yet, so I know some people got hit really hard … I know a lot of Floridians think “Oh, we’re fine; nothing’s going to happen,” but at the end of the day, you don’t really know what nature is going to do, so it’s always better to be prepared.
“Throughout the storm itself, I stayed indoors away from windows and kept my phone [charging], so when the power went out, I would be prepared. After the storm, we went out to assess the damages. Although it was a pretty bad storm, we had relatively little damage, and the same day, my cousin and I fixed those problems. To prepare for a major hurricane, I would suggest boarding up your windows, getting enough food and water for a week and investing a hand-cranked radio and flashlight. They can come in handy when the power goes out and you need to stay up to date with information.”