Was it really better to not evacuate for Hurricane Harvey due to the chaos that creates?

alan avak Posted

I know the Houston mayor stated that past evacuations have not worked well for Houston but could there have been a smaller voluntary evacuation order that would have helped?  I’m only really looking for experts who have some expertise in this area of massive evacuations and disasters with fact based information.  I do believe its very very hard to evacuate a huge city like Houston and some people do not have the money to evacuate anyway.

Henry Uye

As Tropical Storm Harvey barreled toward the Gulf Coast, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott urged residents of coastal and low-lying areas to evacuate and head to higher ground.

No one could know how bad the flooding would be, he said, and it wasn’t worth taking the risk.

“Even if an evacuation order hasn’t been issued by your local official… you need to strongly consider evacuating,” Abbott said Friday. “You don’t want to put yourself in a situation where you could be subject to a search and rescue.”

Abbott’s evacuation plea was in direct contradiction with local officials, who for days had been urging Houston to remain calm and stay off the roads. Some invoked the deadly traffic jams of Hurricane Rita in 2005 to remind residents that fleeing could be more fatal than staying in their homes.

As floodwaters rose, leaving residents trapped on upper floors or waving sheets from rooftops, Houston officials have been repeatedly forced to defend their decision, as critics questioned whether it was the right one.


Asked again Monday about the decision, Turner added: “You put millions of people on the road and they are running into a storm. … The best place for Houstonians and the people of Harris County was right here.”

In my own opinion, You literally cannot put 6.5 million [people] on the road. If you think the situation right now is bad — you give an order to evacuate, you are creating a nightmare.

Smiley Dane

Speaking about the storm it is  not really safe for the family specially the very young ones.I would say that as far as you can still move while there is a storm the do it do to evacuate and go to the evacuation center and when the storm stops then come back into your home again its not bad to move in advance so that no regrets if nothing happens bad.

Ray Martin Ray Martin edited answer

As a native of the Houston area and someone who has hunkered down with family for hurricanes since the 50s.

If you live in the low lying areas then yes evacuate as soon as possible. But for those who live in the areas that are not prone to flooding their best bet is to stay put. Although if it appears that rising water will breach your home then go ahead and think about leaving. Waiting can be a problem although less traffic will be on the road and that is an advantage.

I moved from the Houston area and relocated just off I45 in Huntsville and during Rita it was such a mess with all those people, especially those that didn’t or couldn’t fill their cars down there littered the streets and the interstate with disabled vehicles. We spent a week picking up the trash those people just decided to throw out. Sad that so many were thoughtless and thought we needed all that trash.


yes it was really better1

Nenita Gaspar

Yes it’s safer to evacuate for the safety of your family members early either the hurricane is strong or not,rather than get panicked once your in the middle of hurricane ready.