Evacuation Information for Residents
- “Run from surge – hide from the wind.” Understand that Palm Beach County evacuates for storm surge, not for wind; our evacuation zones are based on this principle. There are inherent risks to evacuation (e.g., traffic accidents, traffic congestion, and getting caught on the road during severe weather), so evacuate only if you need to.
- Know whether or not you need to evacuate ahead of time. Study these maps and know whether or not you reside in one or more of these evacuation zones.
- If you reside in one or more of these evacuation zones, develop a personal/family evacuation plan ahead of time on where you will evacuate to. If you reside in an evacuation zone and are instructed to leave, there are dangerous, even life-threatening risks of not evacuating. Do not ignore the instructions of public safety officials.
- Please listen to local media outlets and follow the instructions of public safety officials for evacuation information. The Emergency Operations Center will take many things into consideration when making an evacuation decision, such as storm forecast, direction, intensity, tide, etc. As such, public safety officials may not announce the specific evacuation zones to follow (i.e., category 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5) until 1-2 days before the arrival of the storm.
- When informed of the specific evacuation zone to follow (i.e., category 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5), put into action your personal/family evacuation plan. Use the Palm Beach County Evacuation Tool for further assistance.
Although public safety officials may order people who live in areas vulnerable to storm surge to evacuate, most residents will not need to go far to be safe. Stay within Palm Beach County. Find a friend, family member, co-worker to stay with, an inland motel, or determine the closest public shelter to go to.
- Leave early. Since flooding and high winds can occur many hours before a hurricane makes landfall, it is critical to evacuate as soon as instructed to do so. Notify family or friends outside the area of your whereabouts.
- Be ready for a slow trip; expect traffic congestion. Be patient. Have a full tank of gas before you go. Never leave without a clear destination in mind.
- If you must go to a public shelter, it is important to carefully select what you take with you; bring only what you can carry. Be sure to bring your prescription medications and medical supplies, bedding supplies (e.g., sleeping bag or blankets and pillows), infant necessities, extra clothing, personal hygiene products, etc. No smoking, alcohol, firearms or pets are allowed in shelters.
- If you do not live in an evacuation zone, “shelter in place.” Remain inside, close all windows and doors, bring pets inside, and seek shelter in an interior room on the first floor.
For further information, please go to www.pbcgov.com/dem/hurricane