Michigan natives prepare for Hurricane Matthew

Preparations for Hurricane Matthew are underway; for West Michigan native Heather Gardner, it's a new experience.

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH., (WZZM)- - This is a busy time of year for travel between Michigan and Florida as many families head south for the winter -- some are going early to prepare their homes this year because of an impending storm.

Heather Gardner grew up in Grand Rapids and now lives in Ft. Pierce, Fla.

"This is my first hurricane," she said. "We've been through tropical storms, but never a hurricane." 

Gardner and her children started preparing last night.

"We had to travel 20 miles just to find a gas station that has gas," she said.

At Gerald R. Ford International Airport, there are no flight cancelations yet, but passengers like Mary Lou Kromer are getting home before the hurricane hits. She lives in Lakeland and knows how crazy it can be.

"We haven't had a hurricane since 2005 in Florida," Kromer said. "So this one will be the first in a number of years -- we're always prepared in Florida.

"All the time." 

If you're planning to fly to any of the affected areas, the airlines recommend you check the status of your flight.

Back in Ft. Pierce, Gardner is packing up and driving inland to Orlando. 

I'll try not to cry, but 36 hours from now, we're looking at not knowing if we have a home to come back to and that's what scares me the most," she said.

(© 2016 WZZM)


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