Monday, December 5

Uber offering discounted rides for Gulf Coast residents to shelters ahead of Hurricane Ian

Residents of Florida’s Gulf Coast who need to evacuate to a shelter ahead of Hurricane Ian are eligible for a discounted Uber ride to do so, Governor Ron DeSantis’ office announced. The discounted rides are eligible for residents in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Manatee and Pasco counties. 

DeSantis’ office said that Uber will be offering the round-trip rides to and from state-approved shelters. The promotional code “IANRELIEF” will take up to $30 off the ride each way. FloridaDisaster.org maintains a list of shelters available. 

Hurricane Ian is expected to make landfall in Venice, Florida, on Wednesday, according to the latest forecasts, as roughly 2.5 million Florida residents are under evacuation orders.

Pasco County officials warned residents to “take this storm seriously” on Tuesday and that those who are under evacuation orders but choose not to leave may be putting themselves at risk of not having access to first responders should there be an emergency. 

“We’ve had a lot of people say, ‘I’m just going to stick this out’ because they’ve done it before,” Pasco Fire Chief Scott Cassin said. “If you do that and you have to call 911, you might not even be able to call 911 because the cell towers might be down. You might not have power at your home. The internet could be down. There’s all kinds of things that could happen, so again, heed the warnings.”

Michael Brennan, acting deputy director of NOAA, also urged people in evacuation zones to leave. Brennan told CBS News on Tuesday that the “window to prepare and get ready for the storm” will be closing by the end of the day. 

“By tonight, you’re going to need to be where you are going to ride out the storm,” he said. 





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