Metro Detroit natives living in Florida prepare for Hurricane Irma

Posted at 5:45 PM, Sep 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-06 17:45:37-04

Khalida Cook spent 17 years living in Michigan, but now she and her family live in Fort Myers, Florida. They're now preparing to evacuate before Hurricane Irma's expected arrival.

"Water's hard to find. We got some this morning because we went really early," she says. "Gas is hard to find. It just sells out really quickly and most people want to try to drive north to Orlando to get out of the main areas of destruction. That's my plan, too."

Steve Zahn, who used to live in Ann Arbor, is staying put in his home on the east side of the state in Port St. Lucie.

The fact that Florida's governor says Hurricane Irma is bigger, faster and stronger than the devastating 1992 Hurricane Andrew, hasn't changed his mind yet.

"That looked like a bomb went off. I hope this one doesn't do that. We're riding things out. I live in a concrete home that's made it through many hurricane," says Zahn.

He works as a contractor and says he's running out of materials, like plywood. He's already boarded up 11 homes and has 6 to go before he and his family prepare for the potential of Irma's wrath.

 "I'm so busy my phone hasn't stopped ringing and I have to turn people down to board their houses up. Everybody's doing okay so far. A lot of people are leaving - which I don't blame them," he says.

Khalida and her family have taken all the precautions they can, but right now, they feel like getting out is the only way. They've packed for a week and are just hoping Hurricane Irma will somehow spare the millions of people left in its path.

"Now that we have gas and supplies, I feel better, but there's this other part of me that doesn't know what's gonna happen when we get on the highway tonight," she says.