Oklahoma family stranded in Orlando as Irma hit

By: Sara Whaley

Updated:

ORLANDO - Quick facts:

  • The Duncan family took a Disney cruise before Irma hit.
  • They rode out the hurricane in Orlando.
  • They were not hurt.

 

A local family says they were stuck in Orlando when then a Category 1 Hurricane Irma hit there early Monday morning.

It all happened after Kit and Benita Duncan took their daughter and grandson on a Disney cruise.

They left Saturday, September 2nd and were supposed to arrive back at Florida the next Saturday. However, with Irma lurking, the captain decided to port early on Thursday.

The Duncans said they had a flight out of Orlando scheduled for Saturday afternoon, but the airport closed about an hour before they were supposed to leave, so they ended up at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort to ride out the hurricane.

They say Irma made its biggest impact in their area between 1 a.m. and 3 a.m. Monday morning.

Disney Resort buildings are built to withstand strong hurricane winds, so Benita says to her it seemed like a really long and strong Oklahoma storm without the thunder.

While many people in Orlando sustained damage and are left without power, the Duncans say they were fortunate.

They say there are only uprooted trees on the resort property, and they still have power.

For them, this has only been an inconvenience. They say they felt safe the entire time.

They say they now understand why some people found it difficult to evacuate. The family contemplated trying to drive out of town at one point, but said they were scared to run out of gas or find themselves left stranded in traffic.

They will try to fly out again on Wednesday.

 

Disney refunded the two cruise days they didn’t use, but they are having to pay for their room accommodations at a hurricane rate.


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