Central Floridians brace for Hurricane Irma

As thousands of people evacuate from South Florida some are seeking refuge inland.

Many residents in the Sunshine State evacuated to Orlando to avoid the wrath of Hurricane Irma. If the current forecasts hold up, the storm could move north along the entire state.

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer says many of the hotel rooms in central Florida are booked. He’s urging residents and visitors to prepare supplies for at least seven days.

“This has been a very severe and unique experience,” Dyer said during a news conference. “In the course of my memory anyways, we’ve not had a storm of this sort hit the state of Florida. We thought it was going to come up the east coast and I-95, now maybe it’s going to be an I-75 storm.”

The city handed out more than 20,000 sandbags to residents Friday but ran out soon after the giveaway began. Thousands stocked up on gas, groceries and other supplies ahead of the storm.

“I passed two gas stations on my way here and they were both empty, so I got my truck filled up, and filled up four, five-gallon gas cans for my generator," Robbie Hippensteel told WKMG.

According to the National Weather Service, Hurricane Irma’s probable path has it moving near the Florida Keys sometime early Sunday morning.

Willie James Inman is a Fox News multimedia reporter based in Jackson, Mississippi. Follow him on twitter: @WillieJames