Broke refugees that “bugged out”, accidentally or otherwise
Many of these refugees have quite a quandary. They don't have money, fuel, food, or water. Some came to fill their tanks and move on to another destination. Others came to simply get a cheaper price. Some came to watch the spectacle. Some were desperately trying to fill a prescription.
As things get tense, some more vocal refugees will make loud demands. A lot of people enjoy watching a conflict, and they'll taunt the merchants or refugees as they get in heated arguments. Some physical altercations will happen as people “lose it”. Sheriffs will have to jail some people, break up fights, make people leave, etc. They won't get far.
Some portion of every population will bend the rules. Some locals will sell refugees things, and people on both sides of that transaction will occasionally lose and get angry. Some residents will sell them water, let them use bathrooms for a price, offer to sell them fuel or food. Prices will be very high. Some altruists will help people out, then have bad experiences and stop.
In every population, there's some sociopaths. They won't put up with this redneck town limiting their freedom. Several will steal, but will get caught since they can't get far. Some will force their way into residents homes since they must get some water. Some will demand drugs from pharmacies. Some will outright steal by creating distractions.
Some people are sociopaths, but only followers. They'll band with the strongest sociopaths, since that's been their life history. After camping out in their cars for one night, some will begin to take matters into their own hands. How long will it be before open violence happens? How long before restaurants are overrun since no one expects robberies there?
As people are stuck longer and longer, sheriffs and mayors will have to decide what to do. Can we force people to leave on foot? Should we offer to feed people from existing stocks? We have to offer water. I think water stations and bath rooms will be set up as a pressure relief valve to control the mob. They'll be massive lines, and it will be done with security, and imperfectly organized.
Some people may decide that they should leave by driving as far as they can, then pulling over and walking the rest of the way. Many will get home, but to chaos in their urban areas. Stalled traffic on highways will lead many to walk over across medians and communicate with the fleeing people and warning them of what transpired.
Fleeing people will run out of gas. They'll get lost. They'll fight due to road rage. They'll have accidents. Some shootings will occur. Some people will panic and flee into meadows and forests.
I can't imagine a more volatile situation than being a refugee without supplies, a working vehicle, no fuel, no water, no food, etc.
Many people can't walk very far due to poor health. I would expect some heart attacks and strokes.
Up next: Refugees that organize for good and for ill.