Media Release

Update #10 T.S. Fay Shelters Are Open

Thursday, August 21, 2008 1:00 AM
9:57 a.m.
ALACHUA COUNTY, FL - Alachua County announces the opening of two shelters.   Tropical Storm Fay continues to remain a concern for Alachua County residents.  The storm has moved little since Wednesday morning and continues to be centered slightly off the Atlantic Coast near Daytona.  The National Weather Service predicts the storm will travel west-northwest but are uncertain as to when that movement will begin.  There is an expectation that once the movement begins, the storm will increase in speed.  The forecast calls for 5 to 10 inches or more of heavy rainfall along the storm path.  Winds are predicted to reach sustained speeds of 25 - 35 mph with occasional gusts of up to 40 mph as the rain bands pass over the county.  The threat of tornadoes will remain throughout the duration of the storm.
The Alachua County Emergency Operations center is opening one special needs shelter and one general population shelter at 10:00 a.m. this morning (Thursday).  Click here for an interactive map showing open shelters.  Shelter locations are as follows:
Rawlings Elementary School - General Population Shelter
3500 NE 15th St.
Gainesville, FL 32906
Westwood Middle School - Special Medical Needs Shelter
3215 NW 15th Ave.
Gainesville, FL 32605
Special medical needs persons are those who are chronically ill and/or rely on electrical equipment for health care.
Residents requiring transportation to the shelter should call one of two telephone numbers available to make those arrangements:
  1. For general population residents, call 352-334-2654.
  2. For residents with special medical needs call 352-955-2575.
Residents concerned about power outages, medical conditions, living in flood-prone areas, or living in manufactured housing / mobile homes should seek safer refuge before conditions worsen.  Residents going to the shelter should bring:
  • 3 day supply of water (1 gallon per person per day)
  • Non-perishable food and special dietary food
  • Baby food and diapers
  • Prescription medications (2 week supply)
  • Blankets and sleeping bags
  • Clothing
  • Battery powered radio
  • Flashlight
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Toiletries
  • Valuable papers and identification
  • Credit cards or cash
  • Cards games and books
Residents with pets will need to provide a travel crate as pets will be transported to the Alachua County Animal Services facility.  They will also need to bring:
  • Pet medications
  • Current vaccination papers and identification
  • Non-perishable pet food and food dish
  • Disposable litter tray and litter
  • Leash
  • Bottled water
  • Blankets
  • Pet photograph
Alachua County schools are closed today.  The Alachua County School Board will make a determination later today concerning school closing on Friday.  There have been no government closings announced.
In anticipation of an increase in rainfall that may occur as a result of Tropical Storm Fay, the Alachua County Public Works Department has opened sand bag locations at the following sites:
  • Archer - 17128 SW Archer Road at the Fire Station/Park
  • Hawthorne - at  the sewage treatment plant
  • High Springs - 17380 NW US Highway 441 at Memorial Park
  • Micanopy - 501 NW 2 Ave (Seminary Ave) at the water tower, located at 23016 SE 65th Lane
  • Newberry - City Yard at 120 NW 260th Street
  • Waldo - 14750 Weeks St. at the Water Tower
  • Gainesville - 405 NW 39th Ave. in City compound
  • North of Gainesville - the wayside park in front of the Public Works compound in Hague on US 441
  • West of Gainesville - 1605 Fort Clarke Blvd (across the street from the fire station 16)
Residents are reminded that sand bags are provided but they will have to fill the bags manually.  Residents are advised to bring shovels as they are not provided at the sites.  These sand bag sites are for use by Alachua County residential customers only and are not for use by commercial customers.  The Public Works Department thanks all of our residents in advance for their cooperation.  Click her for an interactive Sandbag Locations Map.
Alachua County's 311 information line remains open for rumor control and up-to-date information on Tropical Storm Fay.


  • Mark Sexton
  • Communications & Legislative Affairs Director
  • Phone: 352-374-5204
  • Cell: 352-283-2317

If you have a disability and need an accommodation in order to participate in a County program, service or public meeting, please contact the Alachua County Equal Opportunity Office at 352-374-5275 at least 2 business days prior to the event. TTY users please call 711 (Florida Relay Service).