Toledoan evacuated from New Orleans

Linda Greene
Linda Greene
Reported by Tanieya Lewis - bio | email

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Gustav has turned into a monster storm.

The hurricane has its eye headed for the Gulf Coast and could hit as early as Monday. In New Orleans, the survivors of Katrina are being ordered to get out.

Among those evacuating is Toledo-area resident Steve Brown. He'd flown down to visit a friend, but is now being forced out of his hotel. He is among the thousands being evacuated.

Like many New Orleans residents, Brown is keeping an eye on the sky.

As of yesterday, Brown said the weather was calm. The skies were clear and temperatures high.

Though the mandatory evacuation went into effect Saturday night, his hotel went into evacuation mode Saturday morning.

"As of this morning, they advised everybody that everybody had to leave the hotel at 8 am," Brown said.

His flight, pushed back another day, means Brown will have to wait until Sunday afternoon to return home. That means an early start if he doesn't want to miss his flight.

It will take four hours to get to the airport, Brown said, when it is normally a forty minute drive.

But while Brown is trying to get back to Toledo, others are leaving.

The Toledo Chapter of the American Red Cross has already sent one volunteer to the gulf coast. Plus, other local disaster relief efforts are gathering supplies to ship there.

Linda Greene of ISOH/Impact says they are in need of supplies. She says, "It's always cleaning supplies. It's tents. It's generators. It's cots. It's diapers."

Greene says the plan is to send down eight to ten truck loads of these things, and she believes the public will help despite tough economic times at home.

"They're going to respond," she says. "They already have."

With Gustav's wrath predicted to be worse than Katrina's, Brown says the residents will need all the help you can give.