To stay or not to stay: evacuees face dilemma - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

To stay or not to stay: evacuees face dilemma

September 12, 2004

Albany- Albany hotels seem to be emptying just as fast as they filled up.

"It looks like it's coming up here to you people and I don't want no more of it," says Dick Weakley.

Hurricane Charley took it's toll on Weakley's Arcadia home, but he says he feels confident it will be spared by Ivan.

"We don't want to wish it on anyone else either. This thing can go out in the middle of the gulf and stay there and die," Weakly laughs.

Ivan's now projected to head straight into Southwest Georgia, giving many Floridians the feeling that the hurricane is following them. But, they're still not sure whether to go back home or not.

"We're debating. We don't know what to do. We don't know which direction to go, or what to do. We don't want to take up any hotel rooms if someone else needs them worse than we do," Ron Mullins of Cape Coral.

"You don't know because the one thing you don't want to do is get trapped on the highway," adds Bob Vorbroker of Punta Gorda.

Vorbroker and Mullins say they'll keep their reservations through the middle of the week.

"My wife couldn't take any more and I couldn't either quite frankly. There's a time to be a hero and a time not to be a hero," Vorbroker says.

His home is one of the few manufactured houses still standing in Punta Gorda. He knows all too well the destruction a hurricane can cause, and now that Ivan appears to be headed this way, he's warning all South Georgians to take evacuations seriously.

"Get out and go some place where it's safe. Where ever your officials tell you to go, go because your life is worth more than your home. Take your important papers and go," Vorbroker warns.

Evacuees are also warning South Georgians to buy supplies, food, and water now before the storm hits and lines get too long.

Posted at 4:00 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com