A new survey released by AAA this week found that large numbers of Floridians don’t prepare for hurricane season and would prefer to stay put in the event of an approaching hurricane.
The insurance company’s annual hurricane survey revealed that one in five Florida residents out of 5,000 surveyed don’t do any prep for hurricane season. Even wilder was that 24% of Floridians would straight-up avoid evacuation alerts. And even among those who answered that they would evacuate, 56% wouldn’t leave unless the storm was a Category 5 or worse. (Ed. note: Category 5 is the highest level.)
Respondents to the survey broke down their various reasons for not wanting to evacuate:
40%: Want to stay in case there’s damage to their home or property that they can fix
30%: Can’t bring their pets or don’t have a safe option for them
22%: Believe the storm will turn away from their direction
18%: Don’t know where to go
17%: Fear of looting after the storm
15%: Financial reasons
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is forecasting a “near-normal” 2023 hurricane season, which begins Thursday of this week. Last week, NOAA forecast that the six-month hurricane season would bring 12 to 17 named storms, with winds of 39 mph or higher.
Despite this, Florida’s emergency-management officials believe they must do more to communicate the risks of approaching storms. Whether people will heed those warnings though, from this survey at least, appears to be somewhat in question.
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