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During a hurricane or coastal storm, the Mayor may issue an evacuation order for those living in hurricane evacuation zones.

Specific instructions about which areas of the City should be evacuated will be communicated through various channels, including:

If you are in an evacuation zone and your zone is ordered to evacuate:

  • Leave as soon as you can. 
  • Consider going to a hotel, a friend or relative’s home, or an evacuation shelter. 
  • Bring a Go Bag with important documents and items along with you.
  • Evacuate early if you rely on elevators to get out of your building. Elevators may be out of service and may not be always available.

Use public transportation to evacuate, if possible. Be aware that public transportation, including MTA's Access-A-Ride, may shut down hours before the storm arrives. Allow additional travel time and consider your needs.

Learn more about hurricane evacuation.

Hurricane evacuation zones are areas that may be affected by storm surge flooding. The City uses data from the National Weather Service, topographic maps, and actual events to define areas that are most at risk.

During coastal storms, evacuation areas are identified by the assigned zone.

You can find out:

  • If you live in a hurricane evacuation zone
  • The hazards you may face from a hurricane
  • How to prepare for a hurricane
  • Locations of hurricane evacuation centers

Look up your hurricane evacuation zone and find evacuation centers near you.

If you need to evacuate and can’t stay at a hotel or with family or friends, you can stay at an emergency evacuation center.

Evacuation centers will be set up in schools, City buildings, and places of worship. Family members or members of your emergency support network can come with you. Many evacuation centers are wheelchair accessible.

Evacuation centers provide basic food, water, and supplies but you should be prepared to bring a Go Bag with special medical equipment and items that you may need.

Locations are subject to change depending on the emergency. 

Medical Conditions and Equipment at Centers

Evacuation centers have a limited ability to provide medical services. If you are sick or have a serious medical condition, go to a hospital instead of a center.

If you need mobility aids, oxygen tanks, or other medical equipment, bring it with you to the evacuation center. You will probably be taken to a Special Medical Needs Evacuation Center.

Refrigeration for medication will only be provided at accessible evacuation centers. If possible, bring a small cooler or ice pack so that you can keep your medicine cold.

Personal Electronic Use at Centers

Evacuation centers will provide access to charging stations for electronic devices. You will be given priority if you need to charge medical or other equipment.

The City is not responsible for items or devices that are left unattended.

Everyone in your household should have a Go Bag; a collection of things you would want if you have to leave in a hurry. Your Go Bag should be sturdy and easy to carry, like a backpack or a small suitcase on wheels. You'll need to customize your Go Bag for your personal needs.

Pack your Go Bag with the following items:

  • Bottled water and nonperishable food, such as granola bars
  • Copies of your important documents in a waterproof container (e.g., insurance cards, Medicare/Medicaid cards, photo IDs, proof of address, marriage and birth certificates, copies of credit and ATM cards)
  • Flashlight, hand-crank or battery-operated AM/FM radio, and extra batteries
  • List of the medications you take, why you take them, and their dosages
  • Contact information for your household and members of your support network
  • Cash, in small bills
  • Notepad and pen
  • Back-up medical equipment (e.g., glasses, batteries) and chargers
  • Aerosol tire repair kits and/or tire inflator to repair flat wheelchair or scooter tires
  • Supplies for your service animal or pet (e.g., food, extra water, bowl, leash, cleaning items, vaccination records, and medications)
  • Portable cell phone chargers
  • Other personal items

Include items that can help protect you and others from COVID-19, including hand sanitizer, and face coverings for each person.

Hurricane Planning

If you have a disability, prepare for hurricanes or coastal storms immediately. Use the "Ready New York: My Emergency Plan + Hurricanes and New York City" workbook.

The guide includes information on:

  • How to prepare a disaster plan
  • How to find hurricane evacuation centers
  • What to do with pets during an emergency
  • How to assemble a Go Bag
  • How to create an Emergency Supply Kit

Download the Ready New York: My Emergency Plan + Hurricanes and New York City workbook.

Evacuation Guidance

If possible, make arrangements with friends, family, or neighbors before weather conditions become severe. 

If an evacuation order is in effect for your area, stay with family or friends if possible and use shelters as a last resort. Check and see if they have symptoms of COVID-19 or have people in their home at higher risk for serious illness. If they have symptoms or people at higher risk in their home, make other arrangements.

Most evacuation centers do not have special equipment, such as oxygen and mobility aids. Some of them will be able to address special needs but have a limited ability to provide medical services. If you are sick or have a serious medical condition, go to a hospital instead of a center.

Evacuation centers will take pets and service animals, but you must bring supplies and food for them. Carriers are strongly recommended to contain pets in a crowded environment. 

Get more information about emergency preparedness.

When the Mayor issues an evacuation order during a hurricane or coastal storm, you can request transportation assistance through 311 if you:

  • Are a person with a disability or other access or functional needs, and
  • Have no other options to evacuate safely.

Depending on your need, you will either be taken to: 

  • An accessible evacuation center in an accessible vehicle, or 
  • A hospital outside of the evacuation zone via ambulance

You may not be able to request transportation to a specific address.

If you are a pet owner, make every effort to shelter your pet at a kennel or with friends or relatives outside the evacuation area.

At all times, you are allowed to bring a pet in a carrier on MTA subways, buses, and trains. You must have the pet muzzled and controlled on a sturdy leash. When an evacuation order is declared, you can bring a legal pet too large for a carrier.

Pets at Evacuation Centers

Only legal pets are allowed in evacuation centers. Service animals are always allowed.

If you bring your pet to an evacuation center, please bring supplies to care for your pet, including:

  • A secure cage or carrier
  • Proof of required shots
  • Food and water
  • Medication
  • A leash
  • A muzzle

You are responsible for the feeding, clean up, and care of your pet at the center.

You do not need a cage or carrier for a service animal that helps people with disabilities.

For more information on pet emergency planning, visit the Emergency Preparedness page to review the Ready New York: My Pet’s Emergency Plan.

The City has installed Coastal Evacuation Route signs in parts of the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. These signs help direct residents who will be driving personal vehicles to evacuation centers in the event of a coastal storm evacuation.

You can get maps detailing potential hurricane evacuation zones and routes in New York City.

Get hurricane preparation resources, including maps and guides.

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