Shelters should only be used as a last resort


OKEECHOBEE – Okeechobee County will open two hurricane shelters at 4 p.m. today (Aug. 1) but county officials are advising local residents that shelters should only be used if there is no other safe choice.

“Due to COVID-19, if you are already in a safe home, we encourage citizens to stay home, or go to family or friend’s residence, and use the shelter as a last resort,” stated a press release from Okeechobee County Emergency Management on Saturday.

Pre-registration is required for the Special Needs Shelter. If you are not registered, call the Call Center line at 863-824-6888 for further information on required criteria on special needs admittance.

The general population is in South Elementary School, 2468 SW 7th Avenue. This is also the location of the pet shelter. Please note that you are required to supply your county pet registration for your pets when entering the shelter. If you do not have a registration, the pet registration is being offered for a fee of $5 upon arrival to the shelter. There is no other charge to bring your dogs or cats to this shelter. Please provide your own animal crate, and enough pet food and water for the pet(s).

Those who go to the shelters are asked to bring their own masks, hand soap/sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes/spray if possible, as well as routine hurricane supplies such as bedding, change of clothing, toiletries, medications and snacks – everything you will need while you re at the shelter. No alcoholic beverages are allowed.

Please contact the Call Center at 863-824-6888 with any questions.