Man asked ‘smarter’ Virginia Beach neighbors whether he should stay or evacuate

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- As Hurricane Florence moved closed to the Carolina coast, the wind picked up speed and clouds covered the sky over Virginia Beach. Despite the storm's approach, many in a mandatory evacuation zone chose not to leave. Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced Tuesday a mandatory evacuation order for Zone A.

On Thursday however, houses in that area had boarded up windows, but cars lined the streets.

Daryl Cummings is one of the people who planned to ride out the storm.

"We think we'll be okay," Cummings said.

He said this was the first time in 50 years living in Virginia Beach that he experienced a mandatory evacuation.

"The first time you hear it you get a little nervous," Cummings said.

He said his decision to stay came down to 'peer pressure.'

"I mean we asked people to the left of us and people to the right of us, that we considered to be smarter than us, 'hey are you staying?' and they said 'yes,'" said Cummings. "We never got a 'no.' I take that back -- the one 'no' we got they were using it as a hurricane road trip opportunity."

But while Cummings said he would not leave, he did take time to prepare for the storm.

"Nonstop. Gassed up cars, stood in line at Walmart getting food -- yeah so we’re prepared," he said.

Cummings said his biggest concerns were trees falling on cars and flooding. But with the inevitable on the way, he is choosing to see the bright side of the storm.

"As long as people aren’t getting hurt it also brings together a bonding of a community and you do some things that you wouldn’t naturally do, especially when all your phones go dead."

Depend on CBS 6 News and for complete coverage of Florence. Click here to track the storm with the CBS 6 Interactive Hurricane Tracker

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