Residents in Florida and Georgia assess damage

Wind, rain, and surf from Hurricane Matthew continued to pound northern Florida Friday afternoon, while its neighbors to the north prepare.

Thursday Georgia's Governor ordered a mandatory evacuation for everyone east of interstate 95.

Communities like Savannah didn't waste time.

"Now is the time to begin moving, bring what you need,” Savannah Mayor Eddie DeLoach told the public.

Chatham County Emergency Management also told people if they chose to stay, they would likely be on their own for a minimum of 24 hours and possibly up to three days.

Jack Schexnayder left his Savannah home, which is in a flood zone, early Thursday.

"We made a decision to leave and to go to higher ground."

He spoke with Fox 61 from McIntosh County, which is about an hour south of Savannah but on higher ground.

Jack was on the west side of I-95.

He and his family left before traffic leaving the coast snarled.

"Right now from what we've heard, it's about an eleven or twelve hour drive to Atlanta, and under normal circumstances it's a four hour drive,” said Jack.

Meanwhile, his anxiety is high over what he'll come home to in a few days.

"A lot of concern that there could be some major damage,” said Jack.

That was Loren McGuire's fear when she and her husband left their Jupiter, Florida home Thursday for Fort Myers, but Friday a sigh of relief when they returned.

"We got off our exit there was a couple of trees that were uprooted, like ten trees uprooted, and then we pulled into our development and it was just leaves everywhere,” said Loren.

But, no major damage.

"Up until we went to sleep last night it still looked like it was going to do a direct hit right north of Jupiter or on Jupiter,” said Loren, "we dodged a bullet for sure… we just have a lot of raking to do!"