Irma: Hyatt in downtown Jacksonville evacuates

Hundreds of families found out on Friday they had to evacuate the downtown Jacksonville hotel where they thought they’d be safe from Hurricane Irma.

The Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront evacuated its 951 guest rooms.

Those families traveling with pets and children -- many evacuees already -- now have to find a new place to take shelter from the hurricane.

Jamarra McGraw said she thought she’d be safe at the hotel, despite its proximity to the river.

“It’s lives that matter, it’s not stuff,” said Ashley Henriquez, as she buckled her toddler into a car seat. “But what are you going to do? You’ve just got to get safe, that’s all.”

“We decided to stay here, something in a high-rise, you know, in case the water would rise up. But they’re evacuating, so we have to go with friends and family,” McGraw said.

A Hyatt spokesperson said everyone whose plans were canceled will get refunds.