Weather Awareness Guide for Daytona Beach

If you Go - Evacuation Tips

These tips for a smooth evacuation are adapted from the National Hurricane Center and other government and nonprofit sources:

If possible, leave before local officials issue an evacuation order for your area. Even a slight delay in starting your evacuation will result in significantly longer travel times as traffic congestion worsens.

SELECT AN EVACUATION DESTINATION THAT IS NEAREST TO YOUR HOME, preferably in the same county, or at least minimize the distance over which you must travel in order to reach your intended shelter location. In choosing your destination, keep in mind that the hotels and other sheltering options in most inland metropolitan areas are likely to be filled very quickly in a large, multicounty hurricane evacuation event.

BE PREPARED TO WAIT IN TRAFFIC if you decide to evacuate to another county or region. The large number of people in this state who must evacuate during a hurricane will probably cause massive delays and major congestion along most designated evacuation routes; the larger the storm, the greater the probability of traffic jams and extended travel times.

MAKE ARRANGEMENTS TO STAY WITH A FRIEND OR RELATIVE who resides close to your home and will not have to evacuate, if possible. Discuss with your intended host the details of your family evacuation plan well before the beginning of the hurricane season.

MAKE HOTEL OR MOTEL RESERVATIONS BEFORE YOU LEAVE if that is your intended destination during an evacuation. Most hotel and motels will fill quickly once evacuations begin. The longer you wait to make reservations, even if an official evacuation order has not been issued for your area or county, the less likely you are to find hotel/motel room vacancies, especially along interstate highways and in major metropolitan areas.

USE PUBLIC SHELTERS AS A LAST RESORT, if you are unable to stay with friends or family and no hotels/motels rooms are available. Remember, shelters are not designed for comfort and few accept pets. Take food, water, bedding and other personal necessities with you.

TAKE YOUR DISASTER SUPPLY KIT AND CHANGE OF CLOTHES WITH YOU AND MAKE SURE YOUR GAS TANK IS FULL, no matter what your destination is. DO NOT LEAVE PETS BEHIND. This requires advance preparation, including identifying a pet-friendly destination, making sure vaccinations are up to date for acceptance at a shelter. For guidance from the Humane Society of Louisiana, developed through lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina, go to

BEFORE YOU LEAVE HOME, secure your property as described on page 18, shut off the water to the house, follow instructions provided by local utility companies regarding the turning off of electricity or gas, lock doors and windows, close drapes and blinds and check on your neighbors, especially the elderly to make sure they do not need assistance in evacuating.