tv MSNBC Joy Reid MSNBC September 9, 2017 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
welcome back. at the top of the hour 6:00 p.m. on the east coast. let's take a live look at tallahassee, florida, where we're waiting for the start of governor rick scott's briefing on hurricane irma. it should start any moment now, and of course, we'll have that live for you as it happens. we're also watching irma's track
which now has that storm plowing right through the florida keys overnight. and then the next target, florida's west coast, which could face storm surges of ten to 15 feet. irma may still be hours away from making landfall in florida, but take a look at this video. so this is a marina just north of key largo, already dealing with more than a foot of flood water. florida's not the only state bracing for irma, by the way. it could still be hurricane force by the time it reaches georgia. authorities there have been evacuating thousands of residents today. and right now in he is terr row florida we have nbc's gabe gutierrez. we've reports out all across florida. they are continuing to move. gabe, let me start with you. tell us what's going on where you are. >> hi there, chris. well, over the last few hours we've been reporting on this massive shelter that opened up here on the outskirts of fort myers. there were thousands of people waiting to get into this shelter.
some of them saying they were waiting in line for more than five hours or so. well, just now we can report as you can see behind me, the line has -- is now, thankfully, nonexistent. they were able to process those thousands of people. i just spoke with the lieutenant in charge here, and he does say, however, that these shelter is almost at capacity right now, chris. but this is something that we've seen throughout the day. people desperate to evacuate. really many telling us that they hadn't really thought they were going to evacuate, but because of the late shift of irma to the west, they then realized that this thing is going to be more serious than they originally first thought. there were huge fears here about storm surge. the wind, we're starting to get a few of the early gusts of wind right now and there has been intermittent rain. but there were thousands of people here. this line wrapped around the arena and some of them were complaining it was taking too long just a few hours ago they oemd up another door so they were able to process people more quickly am thorlts here in lee
county say, look, they're trying everything they can, but it's just not possible to be able to accommodate every single person that's in jeopardy. although they did say that there was still sometime for those people to leave, but that window is closing quickly, chris. so, again, here just outside of fort myers, many folks here were desperate trying to find out where they were going to spend this hurricane after initially thinking they were going to stick it out, but now they changed their minds and came here. and spent multiple hours in line hoping that they would get in. tonight we can report that thankfully the people coming to this shelter, all of them so far have made it. but again, this shelter is almost full. >> that is good news, though, because when i saw those liejs earlier today it was pretty scary wondering what was going to happen to all of those folks. we want to get to the very latest advisory from the hurricane center. bill, what are we looking at here? >> well, with this storm the thing that we're watching now, we know where it's going, west coast of florida. we're not going to see any more
path shifts or anything else. we have got to prepare people for what is going to happen in your location. the thing that is going to cause as of now the most catastrophic damage that's not going toel allow people to go back in their houses is the storm surge and the worst of that, up to 15 feet is going to be from the fort myers, down to march coisland. now, what does that look like? i'm going to show you pictures. the last big storm we have with a storm surge like this was hurricane sandy on the jersey shore. let me show you what it looked like after they saw a 10 to 12 foot storm surges in that area. these are what it looks like. those houses are just pushed around there. these are the exact type of images that you're going to be witnessing probably not sunday, because sunday is the peak of the storm, but come monday when the sun comes back out, that's what you're going to see. in the gulf where there's very shallow shelves and when you come up, when the water piles up towards the coastline, ike was a really bad storm surge, about 10
to 15 foot storm surgery. one spot was about 17 feet and that was on the other side of houston bay as we headed towards the coast there. that area saw houses that were on stilts that were literally washed away. this right here is what happens when you're on a barrier island beach like we have on the west coast of florida when a 15 foot storm surge comes ashore. you can barely even tell where some of those houses were be located. that is what it's going to look like in southwest florida. that's why they're delg you to go get out. don't die on the coast. plus if we get high tide on top of that, that's when you get debris into your house and even if you're up on stilts, you can get knocked over and then you're in the water and then that's it. we're tracking the eye of the storm. this is the northern coast of cuba. these feared bands are are the tropical storm gusts. a little bit of a break now in key west. only an hour or two away from those trp cal storm force winds.
the danl, the power go out, the roof damage start to happen, the stuff that's going to make people scared, that's this core right here. that's the hurricane force winds. now, the stuff that's really serious, the major hurricane force winds that goes up 130-mile-per-hour, that is right in this inner eye wall right in here. and here is a better view of it. we have a radar site in key west. and then there's one located up here near miami. and this eye is what you want to avoid. that is where we'll get the worst wind damage to the right of the eye is where we'll get the worst storm surge and that's going to be over the top here of the west coast of florida. here is our current wind gusts, key west at 48. so this isn't too bad. like a bad thunderstorm during the summer. but as we go through this evening, watch these winds. 102, 95. this is not a miss print. this is at 9:00 a.m. sunday morning. key west winds are about 2 miles per hour because you're smack in
the middle of the eye. if you're to the east, that's the dirty side of the eye. look at marathon, florida gusting to 95. if you've done that drive, that's only about 45 minutes. that's the difference between going through the eye and being in the dirty side of it. then for our friends in march coi'll about 1:00 p.m., that's when you want to get to your safe shelter. that's when you head into the bathroom with the family and put the mattress in front of the door and on top of you if you go through the eye of a category 4 hurricane. it's almost like going through a tornado. we're going to track it right up the coast. even sarah sew at that could get in the eye as we go throughout 11:00 p.m. sunday. we've also got tornado threats, have to deal with the problems of the storm surge which we mentioned earlier. this is a multifaceted storm, but right now we're still thinking ground zero is going to be the fort myers naples area. >> thank you so much. appreciate that update. this just in, florida highway patrol preparing to close multiple bridges once those winds exceed 40 miles per hour.
i want to go to miami, florida. sam champion, you live there. this is not surprising you that those bridges are very dangerous and people should not be thinking about trying to get out on them. >> yeah. and i live on miami beach which is actually a barrier island. the the only way over there is on a cause way or over a bridge. and we all know, residents in this area all know that the many bridges of this area are no longer safe once those winds pass about 35 or 40 miles an hour. so it's pretty regular when you get any kind of storm or tropical system moving by that we know those bridges are going to go down. state police early today and even miami-dated police were actually sitting across the bridge that takes you over to the miami port, the port of miami. they were stopping any kind of traffic from that. that's a pretty high bridge. it lifts up a little higher and they're also kind of protecting the security of that area. but let me show you the bridges behind us. that's brick elkey. it's a very small island with
very big buildings. you can see the bridge in the distance there, the lower bridge. that's the bridge that takes you to brick elkey. but then look at that high span, the one behind it. that's the one that goes to key biscayne. that's the kind of bridge that they're very concerned, that high span, where the wind makes the bridge sway, but it also will catch a high profile vehicle like a truck or a car and take you right toward the edge if not over the edge of the bridge which is what you don't want to do if you're trying to drive across it. we wanted to make one other point about it and that is that when we see it as a cat 3, a lot of people are saying why isn't it going to stay as a cat 3. it spends an awful lot of time making a run across the northern koels of acuba, the cuba keesz, and the eye was actually on land for most of the night last night, just kind of dragging along it and it took kind of the organization out for a minute of that storm. so how does it gain strength? and the secret is going to be that warm water, the water that's in that -- that fills
that 90 mielts, the 90 miles from key west, the tip of key west to the coast of cuba. just 90 short miles. but it's warm, warm, warm water. and that water, 87, 89 degrees is plenty warm to regenerate that storm and take it right back up. just kind of fueling it, the storm as it swirls is pulling that warm water, air into it and giving it more lift to build and strengthen a little bit more. so it's in the perfect position to strengthen. and that's why the hurricane center thinks that it's going to do that. once we see that eye pass over key west, and it is likely that it's either going to be big pine to key west where the actual center of the eye of that storm goes over there, you've got that as bill was talking about that storm surge, you've got that 15 to 20 foot storm surge. 20 to 25 inches of rain in the keys. all that happens tomorrow, very early in the morning. and then that storm when it goes over the keys doesn't have much interaction with happened. so it will continue to be the strength that it was when it passes the keys and right now,
chris, we believe that's going to be a 4. and it's stronger than it is today, which is why the big concern is everyone seize the weather today. the storm is far away from us. tomorrow the weather is actually going to be a little bit worse where we're standing right now and a lot worse along that southwestern coast of florida. >> sam champion, again, i really appreciate it. and to reiterate what he said when i was talking just a short time ago to he had rap aport, he confirmed that history tells them this is going to be a category 4. it is going to build once it hits that warmer water. and in its path as you just heard from bill containers, you have fort myers, cape coral, that area is really going to get hit hard. i want to turn to msnbc's jacob season off. are you in fort myers now? >> yeah. we're basically around what's called few at that ras sa point from fort myers beach, chris. and earlier today when we were out with the cape coral fire
department they were telling us 179,000 people that live in that city are at great risk because of the storm surge there. everything is so low lying around here and to give you an example, chris of how high the water is actually going to get out here, and rest assured, we are going to get out of here as well, here we are at sea level right here. the river is up that way, fort myers, cape coral are on both sides of the river. there are evacuations happening on both sides. if the water does get up to about 15 feet, so basically here we are down at sea level. i'm under six feet tall so this has got to be about eight or nine feet tall. if water gets up to 15 feet, it might be up to the fence that's at the top of this little pev here below the hotel that we're standing under right now. if the water got up to that level, i have a feeling that people are safe and sound in this area. this hotel has been evacuated. but in a place like cape coral, it could be potentially catastrophic for the people who have not yet slaektd. and there are a good number. we just saw a good number of
people when we road around the cape coral fire department who have not left their homes yet. again, if you are firing this right now in this area, anywhere in lee county, in this area of the gulf coast region of florida, you've got to get out now and get to an evacuation center. there are centers all throughout the area. you can go on the websites and find these evacuation centers. some of them have filled out, but they're opening up new ones just in time. again, the water is going to get from down in this level to that level very quickly over the next 24 hours. and that is the key, just to approximate get out of the path of the storm surge when this storm hits before this storm hits, chris. >> jacob, be careful out there you and your crew. we thank you very much. and even as hurricane irma moves west, residents of southeast florida are still on alert. and joining me now congressman debbie wasserman schultz of florida. her district spans of broward, miami dated counties, includes miami beach. how are you feeling right now, congresswoman? >> well, you know, we're feeling
concerned. they warned us on our congressional delegation briefing calls, folks with fema and the national weather service to make sure that we communicate strongly to our people over here on the southeast coast that they should not relax. we should not let our guard down. you know, we could still have a slight turn to the east that could make a significant impact, and we are already in the midst of experiencing strong tropical storm force winds. we have tornado warnings and tomorrow will be the day that we experience hurricane force winds of, you know, possibly and even likely nearly a hundred miles an hour especially on the west of my district which is on the e r everglades. >> you've been tweeting today, holt lines, power outages, from those very, i guess, specific here is what you can do here is what you should be doing, what's your message over to folks over
where you are? >> well, we want to make sure that people are paying attention to the instructions that are come from our first responders, from fema, from the broward county government, from your municipal government because these are instructions that are going to help keep you safe, make sure that if you lose power, that you can report it and get it restored quickly. but above all, we're really trying to make sure that people are smart. you know, we are seasoned vet ransz when it comes to hurricanes here, but, you know, we still get a thousand people that move to florida a day, chris, and we've got 20 million people in florida now. this is the largest hurricane event that we've experienced in modern times since they have been measuring hurricanes, and it's going to affect multiple major metropolitan areas. so we really need people to take this seriously, and they have been. the concern that we have is that as the forecast track continues to move towards southwest florida, we have to make sure that our folks in the southeast
coast are not breathing a sigh of relief and doing anything did you mean. >> you make a good point. i mean, most of us know, i'm guessing almost everybody out there watching knows somebody who lives in florida, and we're obviously concerned for our family, for our friends and for the people we don't know who live there. and over the course of today, as i've been talking to elected officials, i've heard a lot of praise, frankly, for the state government. heard praise for the federal government. one of your fellow democrats even said, you know, i'm kind of surprised, but i think that they have been doing a good job. you know very well what a hyper partisan world we live in here now, but do you feel like people are coming together? do you feel that the help that people have needed has been there and will be going forward? >> oh, i absolutely do. you know, we put politics aside certainly partisan ship and politics aside when it comes to handling natural disasters here. you know, we regularly have to deal with coordination between the state -- federal, state and
local governments here when a hurricane comes and in its aftermath. so i do appreciate the help and good coordination from our state government, from our folks at fema, owl our municipalities, the national weather service. there have been years when we've had very significant problems both before and after like during wilma when our state was really hit unkbpdel and we were not ready and since then we have put systems in place that allow our federal, state and local government to work very well together. we are floridans and we are all in this together. i went door to door in my district the other day and checked on folks. we want to make sure that people are looking out for their neighbors. in modern times today we don't know our neighbors as well. you might be able to take care of yourself, but also we want people to lean on each other and make sure that people who aren't able to do as much for themselves, maybe we can help
each other out and start bringing -- using a really unfortunate circumstance like this to come back together. >> it is amazing to me whenever we see these circumstances how many people help each other, how many people put themselves in harm's way to help others. >> so true. >> congresswoman, i assume you're somewhere safe right now. >> yes. i am in my home with my family and our hurricane shutters up, and we have a curfew that was being enforced beginning at 4:00 p.m. in broward county, which was a smart thing to do. and so i encourage everyone here in southeast florida stay off the roads. get into a safe structure, and remain there until we get an all clear that it's okay to move around. >> well, you take care. and our thoughts and prayers are with everybody in florida. we appreciate your time. >> thank you. so appreciate it. >> good to talk to you. >> you too. >> and hurricane irma is making its way towards southwest florida. i want to turn to nbc's mia rodriguez who is in miami and i know that the winds have been
starting to pick up. they come, they go. well, there goes your hood. i can see that the winds are swirling around a little bit. what's the situation where you are? >> yeah. you're right about that, chris. conditions have been deteriorating all day, but it goes in sort of waves. right now it's not raining but the winds have picked um. take a look at biscayne bay behind me right now. waters are super chop pi. the sidewalk is about five to six feet above the bay. as you can see, the rest of downtown here, totally deserted. no one out here. earlier today people were here, taking pictures, taking a look at the bay, trying to see basically irma coming ashore. but now they've headed home. here is what one man told us who lives here in miami. take a listen. >> we have a little bit of spare time. we took care of things at home and at the office. and we figured, you know, we normally come here to bike ride, and we wanted to see more or less what was going on.
it's surprising. i'm not used to seeing a hurricane, and you know, it's impressive. >> and right now there's a curfew that's going to be in place at 7. we're going to make our way out of here. chris. >> do that, please. thank you so much. nbc's mia rodriguez. and up next, irma is expected to strengthen after lingering over the coast of cuba. its outer bands have begun to batter the florida keys. we're going to keep you informed. this is still an historic hurricane. it is still going to bring big storm surges, a lot of rain, high winds. we will have continuous coverage all through the night and through the day, but i'm told that -- is rick scott coming out to do the broo efg? there we go. he has been giving regular updates. let's take a listen to the governor of florida. >> good evening. i just had a briefing with the national hurricane center and all florida counties.
hurricane irma is lar impacting florida. in the heart of this storm is quickly approaching us. here is the weather. south florida is already experiencing tropical storm force winds and dangerous satisfies. hurricane irma is battering south florida and the florida keys with dangerous winds and continues to remain a catastrophic and life-threatening major category 3 storm with winds of 125 miles per hour. the center is getting better organized and will intensify as it approaches florida. the coral will move across the keys early tomorrow morning and go across our state on sunday. it will impact northwest florida on monday. the keys will see direct impact of the eye of the storm. there will be 18 to 15 inches of rain across the state and up to 25 inches in the keys. tornadoes are possible in south florida this evening and central florida tomorrow. hurricane conditions will be felt across the west coast beginning sunday morning. for tropical storm conditions
will be felt across the warning area. millions of floridans will begin seeing the impacts with life-threatening winds tonight. tonight. this is a serious threat of significant -- there is a serious threat of significant storm surge along the entire west coast of florida and this is increased to 15 feet of impact above ground level. in southwest florida. tampa will see a surge of five to eight feet. big bend, three to six feet. we also see an increase in flooding of rivers throughout the peninsula. this is clearly a life-threatening situation. remember, in southwest florida the storm surge comes after the strongest winds. do not think the storm is over when the wind slows down. local officials will let you know when it is safe. the storm surge will rush in and it could kill you. it's going to -- when it happens, the storm, the water just rushes in and rushes out.
with the storm track families in the panhandle need to be on high alert for severe weather and hurricane force winds. here in tallahassee it is likely we will experience hurricane force winds and families must start preparing now. we saw what hurricane irma did to this community last year and we could see similar or more severe wind threats from irma. if you have been ordered to evacuate, you need to leave now. this is your last chance to make a good decision. evacuations are in place in areas across the state. more than 6.5 million floridans have been ordered to evacuate. do not put yourself or your family's life at risk. now is the time to do the right thing for your family. school buses are aiding in evacuations. please take advantage of this service. if you need to leave and are unable to do so for any reason, call 1-800-342-3557 and we will
do everything we can to get you out. protecting life is our absolute top priority. no resource or expense will be spared to protect families. i urge everyone to check on their neighbors, their family and their friends. if you know someone who is not evacuating and should, please contact them and make sure they have a plan to get out now. we have been very aggressive in our preparation for this storm and now it's upon us. every floridan should take this seriously and be aggressive to protect their family. possession can't be replaced. your life, your family cannot be replaced t. shelters. we have been working around the clock with counties to ensure there are enough shelters. currently there are more than 385 shelters open across every county in the past of the storm. and more are opening tonight. more than 70,000 floridans have
taken shelter and there is still room for more. if you have a building and emergency officials ask you to open a shelter, please comply. this is so important to families seeking safety. everyone in florida needs to find a safe place to go. traffic. evacuation routes are moving, and we have implemented emergency shelter use on i. 4 from 50th street in tampa to orlando. our 1,700 state troopers remain on the road to assist in evacuations of traffic. they will remain on our roads until it is unsafe. check real time traffic information and evacuation routes at fl 511.com. we are still aggressively working to keep gas stations open and filled along active evacuation routes. i waived florida's motor fuel import tax for five days to help bring more fuel to our state for
storm response and recovery. this will make it easier after the storm. we absolutely know fuel is important. and we are devoting every state resource we can to address this problem to ensure we have fuel immediately -- for everybody, but we want it immediately for first responders and rescue efforts. every single florida guards man that can be called up has already been deployed to prepare to respond to this stornl. we have so many of our law enforcement community that are putting their lives at risk to help floridans get to a safe place. and they will not stop until it's no longer safe. we cannot thank them enough. utilities. right now more than 76,000 people are without power. it's going to get worse. utility providers vr prepositioned resources throughout the state and in neighboring states. we know how important power is. we will aggressively work with our utilities to make sure it gets back on.
regarding recovery, we have search and rescue staged and ready once the storm passes and it's safe for first responders. i met with the coast guard admirable today and they are here and have asked us to help in this process. the storm has continued to change rapidly, but we have food and water prepositioned to be zpursed to impacted areas. we will do all we can to get this out quickly. the department of transportation, are national guard and fish and wildlife will work as fast as they can to clear roads so we can get food and water to shelters and impacted areas. we also have guards men from other states ready to come in and help with this. but disaster response takes time. we will go as fast as we can once the weather is safe. we're also working with fema on temporary housing solutions for displaced residents. i've been talking to president trump pretty much every day. other members of the white house and other members of the cabinet. they're absolutely committed to provide whatever resource they can to help us live through this
storm and in our recovery efforts. i want to be clear. we are under a state of emergency. those who perform vital services, including health care staff, we need you to be there to help your community. you are answering the call now that we need nurses, and we have nearly more than 2,500 who have already responded. those who respond to this need are heroes to our neighbors with special needs, and we are so grateful to them. but we can still use more. florida needs volunteer nurses to help at our special needs shelters. if you're a nurse, please e-mail help fl at fl health dot gov. you can still also e-mail bp rchd at fl dot gov. so many people across the country and across the world have called to offer their prayers and support. i want to thank the gofrz of states that have provided every
resource we've asked for. we have our country's best first responders to help us and florida, we will get through this. this week floridans have demonstrated to the world that we know what it means to get prepared. neighbors are helping neighbors, and strangers unite as floridans have come together to pull through this defr stating storm. let's get together and pull through this. welcome back even stronger. you can follow my twitter account at fl gov scott for this life saving messaging and updates in english and spanish. hurricane irma j speaking in
spanish ] >> governor rick scott, usually this part when he speaks spanish does not go on for very long. is he going back to speak english? here is some questions. >> northward and we'll begin to see irma pass their homes and are thinking about getting back on the roads to go back home? >> you've got to be patient. you've got to listen to local officials. you know, you've got to be safe. i mean, if you just stop and think about this for a second. we want everybody to survive this hurricane, right. we focused on getting everybody out. the evacuation zones, get them into safe shelters. after it happens, be patient. wait until local officials tell you if you can go back. here is what's going to happen. we're going to have downed power lines, a lot of trees down. we're going to have roads that are impassable.
we're going to have flooding. we're going to have all these issues. everybody is going to have to be patient, and it's going to be hard to be patient. everybody is going to want to go back to your home and see what happened. but, you know, we've got at the state, local and federal level, we're going to have everybody in here trying to get us back -- we're going to try to get the fuel back, power back on, try to get the roads cleared, try to do everything. also in the beginning, what we're going to want to do is milwaukee sure -- there's going to be recovery efforts. and so you don't want to be in the way of those. so you've just got to be patient and wait and listen. all the local officials will tell you when it's safe to go back to your neighborhood. at the state level we'll let you know if evacuation routes are clear to come back, but everybody is going to have to be patient. this is not -- this is just a massive storm, and the recovery efforts and the restoration efforts are going to be -- they're going to take time. and i wish it was going to happen overnight. it's not. this is going to be massive. i'm still praying that we don't
lose, you know, lives. but, you know, we have the risk now, and we have the risk afterwards. steve. >> i'd like to ask you about the extent to which you're familiar with what we saw after katrina, which is ocean water, salt water, especially in southwest florida, mixing with flesh water that's used for ago culture, for drinking and other uses and causing massive assault water intrusion that takes years to repair. what can you tell us about that. >> that's going to be a clear issue that we're going to deal with, but right now my focus is going to be how do we survive this hurricane? how do we get people back to their lives? we're going to have significant issues. we're going to have issues with regard to our beaches, all sorts of issues that we're going to have to deal with. >> governor, ohio announce that had it's sending down more than 3,000 national guard. i know earlier in the week you said you had access to as many as 30,000.
i mean, are you basically telling send everybody because it's going to be that bad? >> what we'll be doing is -- so right now we're going to go through and see what happens. we'll be assessing the damage as quickly as possible and finding out exactly what we need. i met with the coast guard today. we'll try to get down to the keys as quickly as we can because that's the first place where we're going to have significant damage. and we're going to is assess did we lose bridges, recovery efforts. can we even fly in with the arptsds down there. so we'll figure out what we need, but i can tell you that every time i've talked to president trump, every time i talk to brock long the fema director, they will provide whatever resources. but they know that you want to do it in a coordinated manner. but we'll be -- when we have a whole plan to deal with this. now, everything -- as you know in a disaster, it all changes once -- you've got to find out
exactly what happened. >> the seriousness of what you communicated the last few minutes, you made a decision to close schools and universities and state offices and some institutions are going beyond next monday. are you giving any thought to extending that order beyond monday in terms of keeping all schools closed throughout the state? >> we'll decide as the weekend goes on. we'll see -- as we start seeing what happened and we'll see what the damage is, we'll be making those decisions. >> governor -- >> could you give us an update on where things are with gas stations? are there any places where people are stalled because they don't have gas? any problems to that degree? >> we have worked to try to get fuel around the state. we especially worked to try to get fuel in the evacuation routes. i'm sure people have run out of gas around the state. you can go to fl 511.com and
look oot our evacuation routes and people are moving. we've got road rangers out there. i don't know if tupt to add anything, brian. >> sure. i have not seen anywhere in the state that is completely out now. i haven't looked at that statistic in a couple of hours. i know that as you have seen many areas have significant shortages, but i haven't seen anywhere that's completely out. and we're working with the retailers here in the eoc to make sure that those parts of the state that are still moving that they are trying to get as much fuel as possible to those areas as well. >> can you give us an update on what's happening with the area around the dike given the new forecast? >> sure. we are waiting for an update from the corps, but if you go back -- the positive is we did everything we could to keep everybody safe. we hopefully, you know, will have less winds there which will reduce the chance that we'll have the water spill over. but we've all along the corps has told us that they don't
believe the dike will be impacted. >> governor, i know that you can maybe give us some words in spanish, but for the spanish community is concerned about safety -- [ speaking in spanish ] what is your message to those who have left the state? >>. [ speaking in spanish ] thank you. >> governor, can you talk a little bit about the efforts by law enforcement to evacuate the homeless in some of these heavily impacted or expected heavily impacted areas? i read something that law
enforcement is using baker acts to get some of these people off the streets in some cases. >> our law enforcement has gone above and beyond all around the state to do everything they can to keep people safe. you'd have to reach out to them at the local communities to see what each local community has done. but i can tell you that i've traveled the state for the last, what, five days, and i've met with law enforcement, and they are very committed. every life is important to them, and they're -- i think they're going to continue as long as they can to do everything they can to get people to safety. >> what can people do now in these critical hours to be sure there isn't loss of life? >> steve, i think the biggest thing is if you're in an evacuation zone, you've got to get to a shelter. i mean, you might -- you've got to keep someplace that's higher ground, and you've got to -- there's not many hours left abuse the winds are coming. there's not going to be a lot of time now to be able to drive very far. so you've got to get to the shelter. you can go to florida disaster
dot organize slash shelter to find out where they are or call your local emergency management team. and then the other thing is if -- you ought to call your family and friends and make sure they're getting out and tell them how important it is to go to safety. you know, it's disappointing sometimes when you watch on tv that you see somebody that's going to ride it out and based on what you hear from what the national hurricane center is putting out, you think how could you ride that out? if you go down to the keys and you think, you know, you're going to have 15 foot of storm surge in these keys that are not very high, you're going to have 15 plus inches of rain, you're going to have 125 to 150 mile an hour winds. how is anybody going to survive this? anywhere where you think that somebody might be in an area where they ought to evacuate, you ought to call them and try to talk them into -- tell them how important they are to you.
>> no one has seen what you've seen and no one has traveled the sight schts you've traveled the last five or six days. so i want to ask what you've seen and experienced out there that's caused you special concern. >> well, the thing that really causes me the biggest concern is i don't think anybody has realized the extent of this storm surge. if you stop and think about it, my home down, naples, 15 feet above ground level, i mean, how do you survive that? i mean, and you know, last -- i don't know if you remember this story last year, but this lady just south of here, i think there was about six foot of storm surge, and she stayed, of course, because of her pets, which you can imagine you want to. and it got to three feet, and she realized, i mean, it was an older house. she probably had seven foot ceilings and she realized she was not going to survive. she was so lucky because she got outed of her house and she walked out and there was a high water vehicle and it was the last vehicle leaving.
if it hadn't, she would have passed away. and so if you stop and any about that and that was about six foot of storm surge. and if you listen to her story she talked about how fast the water moved in and out. there would have been no way for her to survive. you just think about how can anybody survive this stuff? so, you know, i hecare about everybody in my state and i just want everybody to live. >> governor, can i ask you about an issue that you know about from your past role and evacuation from hospitals and nursing homes. and i know earlier in the week you talked about the need to -- you all did an air evacuation of one hospital in the keys. do you have any indication, because i know that from what i understand a lot of facilities have had to be evacuated. have you had any issues, any concerns, any problems in that arena? >> there's been a lot of -- there's hospitals that have evacuated, and there's also, you
know, nursing homes, skilled nursing, a variety of facilities. i've been -- i did a call with a lot of them last night. and, you know, some there are still issues. they're trying to find the right shelters. so we're going -- you know, we give them our telephone numbers. we said tell us where your problems are. we'll do everything we can to help you. i remember last year in matthew we had nursing homes that were having a difficult time getting the ambulances to evacuate. so, yeah, people are -- they're still struggling to get everything done. but i can tell you, you know, everybody is working to get it done. >> katrina like situation where you had some hospitals in new orleans that were basically cut off? >> i hope not. we're talking to everybody. you hope you don't.
i mean, we've put a lot of effort -- you know, justin seniors calling around, doctor phillips is calling. we're talking to everybody. and we're making ourselves accessible, and we're telling them how to get ahold of us. and so i hope that doesn't happen. so, you know, if you think about it, what concerns you a lot is that, you know, the storm moved west and i think that for some people that surprised them, and so that's why, you know, we've worked hard really, you see how many more shelters have gotten put up just in the last 24 hours as this thing has moved west. and it's two things. it's moved west and the storm surge numbers has just -- i mean, that is totally different than what anybody has ever seen. i don't think anybody alive today has ever seen in this state anything close -- anything like this. i mean, 15 feet of storm surge
above the ground level, that's -- i don't know how you survive that. >> governor, what would you say -- a lot of the folks that came up here basically from south florida, now they're more in the path than south florida. should they stay here or request go somewhere else? >> i think you should follow the weather and see what's going to happen. i mean, look, if you -- you're not going to drive back to storm surge, right? you shouldn't be driving back to, you know, to 120, 150-mile-per-hour win. the goal is to keep following this. we're going to do everything we can to keep people safe. we're going to do everything we can to inform people of how to make the right decision for safety. we're going to continue to do everything we can to keep evacuation routes open, whatever changes. i can tell you that the state, federal and local level, people working together. they're trying to get the information out to keep everybody safe. and everybody is, you know -- i've been -- i mean, i've been
in so many cities this week, i can tell you they're working hard. all these kgts are working hard. you can see how hard people are working here. from the white house to fema to every federal agency i know is here trying to be helpful. >> governor, are you going to remain here for the time the storm comes threw your state or are you going to move around the state? >> i'll decide. i'm going to be here tonight and then, you know, my goal -- if i can get to the keys to assess the damage, i'll try to get there when i can. i'm really concerned about how many people might still be in the keys and what's going to happen to them. so. >> all right. thanks, everybody. >> now it's upon us. those are the words of governor rick scott, who once again said this is a catastrophic and life-threatening storm. millions have evacuated. there are more than 385 shelters
that are already open in florida. more are going to be opening. 70,000 plus people are there, but he expressed serious concern about people who have decided to ride out this storm. bill containers is here with us. he talked about the surge. he talked about rain. he talked about wind. he talked about the possibility of tornadoes and gave a very specific warning that when you get those hurricane force winds and they start to die down, there's an inclination people want to go out. people want to go see what kind of damage has been done. and that's when the storm surge comes. >> there's stories in the 40s and 50s of people that went out in the eye of a hurricane. it was before satellites -- >> because you showed it 2-mile-per-hour in the eye of a storm. >> and then it goes from that to 130 in like five minutes and people would die. hopefully now in the age of technology people know don't come out during the eye. go right back in your shelter. i think what the governor did at this time was very smart. this is kind of the start of the
damage of the storm. this is the beginning of now we're going to start to have problems. power is going to start going out. it's going to ramp up and only get worse from here until probably the -- i think the peak of it is going to be from 10:00 a.m. tomorrow to 10:00 p.m. tomorrow. but this is the beginning when people start to suffer from the lack of power, free fall on your house. he set the tone with the storm surge, because florida hasn't been hit by a storm surge. he couldn't even remember the last time. with katrina, even the western panhandle saw a storm surnl, eight to ten feet in some areas. wilma came in. there was a storm surge with that. six to eight. nothing 10 to 15. even he was like 15 feet, how do you survive that. try to picture a house on the beach with 15 feet of wurt a. and so that kind of set the tone. i think that was excellent. it was a well-timed press conference and now he's probably going to just hunker down like everyone else and see how this develops and then see where we're going to need to get the
resources sent out afterwards. >> i think he has made the point that we're going to do everything we can. we're not going to skimp on money, resources. but tls going to be a point where you are not going to be able to get help because it's not safe -- >> we're not there quite yet. tell our director, take up the map on weather one. and this is kind of what they'll watch. the maps, the emergency managers are similar to the maps that we get. this is all a lot of information from the hurricane center. the red in there that i drew the mileage on, that's the hurricane force winds. the police and everything else, the rescuers, thooel still go out in trp cal storm force winds, but once they get to hurricane force, at that point they start risking their own lives and they to make judgment calls depending on how bad it really is, but for the most part they're not going to go out in that core. as that core, that will soon be into areas of south florida. right now it's down there in the
seas. it's still a hundred miles away from key west. the million yon dollar question is we don't know how strong it's going to be. right now it's a category 3. it's not going to weaken. major hurricane landfall in florida. if it wasn't for harvey, it would be the first one going back to wilma, 13 years. and it could even go up to a 4. and then the damage is justine that much worse. and so then it just kind of incrementally just kind of piles on top of each other. people want to know, you know -- the stornl surge is so mind-boggling to some people. even to myself, my mother, they have a winter home in new york, go down like a lot of people do in florida in the winter in fort myers. i've been there many times. it's a 15 minute drive for us to get to the beach. i had to tell her that she's going to have a nine foot storm surge on her property and they're at nine foot elevation. so it's going to be a close call and she couldn't believe it. they don't have insurance. eye loft people aren't going to
have insurance to cover this surge this far away. there's probably that are people in their houses right now listening that are, you know, like we're not going to evacuate. we're ten miles from the ocean. why do i need to evacuate from the stornl surge. but it's so flat in that area that the water is going to go so far inland, people are going to be shocked and people are going to be on social media asking for help, asking for rescues and as you said as they get to the peak of the storm, that's not going to happen. >> she's out? >> she's out. she came back. she's not down there. but she has many friends that are still down there. >> yeah. >> and they're not planning to leaving and she was trying to tell them, hey, my son is a weather guy, he's telling me nine feet of storm surnl. you're going to have to get out of there. and that's just one story. everyone seems to know someone in florida, and if they're in that storm zbleen, u to know your elevation. if you're fold to evacuate, get out. you still have a chance now. not everyone has iphones and i was always telling you have to know your elevation. they said if you have the cam pass feature on your iphone, it will actually tell you your
elevation, anywhere you are. so find out what your storm surge is, elevation is. if you have to get out, you've only got about 12, 18 hours left. >> all right. the clock is ticking. thank you. i'm glad to hear your family is out. in the miami, florida. he lives there, has been monitoring and understands what it is. the psychology of the people who are there. what we heard from the governor again is something i have heard from him in every press conference he's given. protect your family. protect yourself, protect your family. >> reporter: yeah. it's so important to say. that will get through to people. a lot of times people don't believe the threat, the intensity of the threat. they think, oh, you know, they are talking about somewhere else or talking about somebody else. i'm fine where i am. my family is fine where we are. look, we have our water, we're fine. storm surge is something that's really, no matter how much we hammer is, bill is excellent driving the points home and
showing that to people. no matter how much we talk about it there is an inability to conceptualize the water we are talking about. people live on the water. the place you're talking about, naples, ft. myers up to tampa. what they have done to allow people to live on the water is cut channels and keys. they built developments where you get a chance to live on the water. so you live daily just like this with the water right behind you. the water that we are talking about here just like the water in naples, like the water in ft. myers. if you look across at the sea wall. that elevation where the top of the water goes to the top of the gra grass, we are talking four and a half to five feet there. in this area, the storm surge is expected to be four to six feet. that gap, the dry gap, the water
will be above that. it will be splashing above where we are here. that's four to seven feet. same situation for the people who live on the keys. where the canals are in naples, ft. myers, tampa bay. now think 15 feet. i can't even jump 15 feet. we are talking about water that high moving into your home. can't be on the first floor. can't be on the second floor. generously, first floors are eight, nine feet. ten feet if you are lucky to get that space. think about two floors at least. moving in your community at a speed that it will take everything out of the way with it including you.
it's hard to think about it if you live on the water that this is a threat. it's beyond your understanding. it's likely to happen in this case. particularly on the western communities where the eye wall is driving up the coast. we are going to get four to six feet here. storm surge is huge. just want to drive it home to people today. >> i want you to stay there and listen to the next guest. >> sure. >> staying home is lauren brook of key west. she joins me on the phone. are you there? >> i'm herement. >> you have heard what the meteorologists say. why did you decide to stay put? >> i decided to stay put early on. there was a mass exodus.
i wanted to make sure my house was battened down. i knew i could get to a potentially safe place. there were so many on the road and gas was out everywhere. atms were out of money. i was worried about being on the road throughout florida while everybody else was. maybe it will hit key west, maybe it won't. for a couple of days i thought my parents would get it worse. now it is too late. we are doing the best we can. >> what precautions are you taking? >> our landlord boarded up the first floor of the house. it's the only hill on the island. new towns out of key west.
very much at sea level if not below. i'm in basically a concrete building fortress with hurricane windows. we are not going to be concerned about the hurricane windows shattering as much. so that's what we are doing. you know, it's going to be hard to get back in with a potential of many bridges being closed. it was a rough decision. >> are you scared? >> i'm terrified. >> lauryn, stay there. i want to put sam champion back on. he lives in miami. he's a meteorologist and knows this stuff. is there anything that you can tell her? she's understandably terrified, sam. she is in a building. is there anything you can tell
her very quickly? >> the two things we have to protect you from and you can survive a storm like this. you have to get out of what the high storm surge is and you're protected from wind, i could hear your description. you have to get high. you have to get high. >> sam, thanks to you. lauryn, we're thinking about you. craig melvin continues on the other side of the break.
a good saturday evening to you. craig melvin here in new york as we continue our breaking news coverage of hurricane irma. you are looking at key west right now. conditions deteriorating in south florida in some cases rapidly. the eye wall now approaching the florida keys. this is a massive storm. it's expected to strengthen to a category four with winds reaching up to roughly 140 miles an hour near the center. tropical storm winds extending hundreds of miles. a devastating storm surge of up to 15 feet in some places. up to 25 inches of rain in some places as well. irma right now currently projected to head up florida's west coast which could put cities like naples and tampa directly in its path. we could also see extreme winds all the way into georgia as it moves north. some 7 million people have been urged