Orange County has announced the locations of six Hurricane Matthew shelters, including two that take pets.

The county also announced firefighters will be going door-to-door in trailer parks Thursday morning encouraging residents to evacuate and will be suspending all routine county operations at 1 p.m. through Monday morning. Orange County personnel along with members of the HOPE Team, will be canvassing areas to reach homeless people to get them into shelters.

Sandbags are still available for Orange County residents ONLY throughout the county. IF you have an orange on your street sign, that means you are an Orange County resident and are eligible to pick up sandbags until 3 p.m. Thursday at the following locations: 3258 Clarcona Road in Apopka; 18753 Old Cheney Highway in Bithlo; 2530 N. Forsyth Road in Goldenrod; 4200 S. John Young Pkwy. in south Orlando; 11442 Intermodal Way in Taft; 4631 Young Pine Road in Three Points; 644 Beulah Road in West Orange; and 3400 Golden Gem Road in Zellwood.

Orlando city residents, who have fountains on their street signs, can pick sandbags until noon today from the City’s of Orlando Streets and Stormwater Division at 1010 Woods Avenue.

Hurricane Matthew’s latest tracks show hurricane-force winds extending well into Orange County.

The pet-friendly shelters will be at Bithlo Community Park in Bithlo and Barnet Park on West Colonial. People-only shelters are opening at Apopka High School in Apopka; Corner Lake Middle School on Chuliota Road; Timber Creek High School in Avalon Park; and Odyssey Middle School on Lee Vista Boulevard.

The county reported a survey Wednesday night found 17,000 hotel rooms still available in Orange County.


About The Author

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at

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