Some Can't, Won't Flee Gustav

Finances, fear, fatigue lead some to ignore evacuation
By Kate Rockwood,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 31, 2008 10:19 AM CDT
Though the French Quarter is near-deserted, there are some residents who aren't leaving.   (AP Photo/Rob Carr)
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(Newser) – As Gustav roars toward the Gulf Coast, and New Orleans’ mayor calls it “the storm of the century,” there are some in the city who can’t—or simply won’t—evacuate. “Most people don’t have cars to leave, don’t have money for gas. Pay for a hotel for that long? I guess I’m gonna stay and work,” a 26-year-old dishwasher tells CNN.

“I don’t leave for nothing,” said a man who’s worked in the French Quarter since 1985. “I didn’t even leave for Katrina.” But for some, even those with the means, leaving New Orleans just 3 years after Katrina forced them out is simply too much to bear. “I am in love” with this city, said an antique store owner who had briefly relocated to Houston. “And so I make my choice.” (Read more Hurricane Gustav stories.)