St. Lucie County Urges Residents to Prepare for Hurricane Matthew, Announces Closings

St. Lucie County Department of Public Safety urges all residents to begin checking their hurricane supplies and making plans for the impacts from Hurricane Matthew, as most of the east coast of Florida is under a hurricane watch that could become a hurricane warning within the next 24 hours. While the track of Hurricane Matthew, which is a major hurricane, is uncertain, St. Lucie County is expected to experience severe weather, including tropical storm to hurricane force winds, heavy rains, storm surge and potential flooding.
St. Lucie County is expected to issue a local State of Emergency Declaration this afternoon with the Douglas M. Anderson Emergency Operations Center, moving to a partial activation Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 8 a.m. The Public Information Hotlines, 772-460-HELP (4357), will be activated starting Wednesday at 8 a.m.
St. Lucie Public Schools will follow an early release schedule on Wednesday, Oct. 5.  There will be no after-school activities. This includes the cancellation of all athletic events. All schools will be closed on Thursday, Oct. 6 and Friday, Oct. 7. All before-school and after-school activities and athletic events are cancelled on these days as well. Schools are scheduled to re-open on Monday, Oct. 10.
Additionally, St. Lucie County government offices will be closed Thursday, Oct. 6 and Friday, Oct. 7. Essential personal will be on-call or activated to the Emergency Operations Center.  St. Lucie County’s Code Compliance Board Meeting for Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 9 a.m. and the Transportation Planning Organization Meeting at 2 p.m. have been canceled. The Listen to the Water Lecture Series with Dr. Wayne Mills has been rescheduled to Nov. 2 at 6:30 p.m.
St. Lucie County’s Department of Public Safety is working with local government and community partners to begin activation of the Havert L. Fenn Center, 2000 Virginia Ave., Fort Pierce, as a Special Needs Shelter. Officials plan to activate the Special Needs Shelter Wednesday morning. Anyone with Special Needs that has not registered please call 772-462-8100.
Public Safety officials are also considering the potential activation of shelters at Lakewood Park Elementary School, 7800 Indrio Road, Fort Pierce; Samuel Gaines Elementary, 2250 Jenkins Road, Fort Pierce; and Treasure Coast High School, 1000 SW Darwin Blvd., Port St. Lucie. Official times for opening these shelters will be announced later.
Residents living in low-laying areas and on the barrier island are encouraged to consider implementing their evacuation plans. If residents do evacuate, they should remember to let their out-of-town friends and family know what their hurricane plans are. Those residents planning to shelter in place, should make sure they have enough food, water and medicine to last them at least three days.
Businesses and residents are asked that they not place tree limbs and yard debris by the curb until after the hurricane notices have been lifted. Waste Pro Services (garbage, recycling and yard waste collection) will be suspended Thursday and Friday due to the storm.
Political candidates are asked that they remove their signs from yards and right-of-ways, as these can easily become projectiles.
As information changes, residents are reminded that information will be posted to St. Lucie County’s website ( and social media sites ( and Twitter @StLucieGov).
Once St. Lucie County’s Emergency Operations Center is fully activated, briefings will be scheduled for 8 a.m., noon and 5 p.m.
St. Lucie County staff have begun making their hurricane preparations, shuttering buildings and documenting the conditions of facilities for insurance purposes and encourages residents and businesses to do the same.

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