In case your personal hurricane evacuation plans include a trip on Florida’s Turnpike, the
Florida Department of Transportation offers the following tips to help make sure your journey is safe, convenient
and as speedy as possible:
- Make sure your vehicle is fully fueled and well serviced before you hit the road. Fuel availability may be
limited, especially immediately before and after the storm hits, and what fuel is available will generate extremely long lines at Turnpike service plazas.
- Carry a supply of food and water for each member of the traveling party.
- Do not wait to evacuate until after the announcement is made that Turnpike tolls have been
suspended. Tolls are often suspended in conjunction with mandatory evacuation orders which may
come only after the threat of a hurricane is imminent. Consider paying the toll and leaving early when
traffic is much lighter.
- During toll suspensions, continue to have cash available at all times. Just because tolls are suspended
on one segment of the Turnpike does not mean they are suspended systemwide. When you approach
a plaza at which the tolls are suspended, SLOW DOWN and be conscious of other motorists.
- Have a specific destination in mind and the route planned well in advance of your departure. When you
travel be sure to carry any appropriate maps along inside your vehicle.
- When possible, evacuate tens of miles instead of hundreds of miles.
- Please pack a lot of patience and be prepared for delays. Significant traffic delays are inevitable in a
state as densely populated as Florida. Again, it is important to try and avoid the rush and depart earlier
rather than later.
Getting back after the storm: If you have traveled out of your area and it has been impacted by the storm, be sure to stock up on any items that might be in short
supply when you return home. Consider getting extra cash at a working ATM. Fuel up before
traveling to an area that might have limited availability due to power outages. Follow any emergency
instructions that may be displayed on the Turnpike’s overhead dynamic message signs.