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Palm Beach County officials update Hurricane Dorian preparations

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Posted at 1:04 PM, Aug 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-31 20:48:59-04

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Palm Beach County and West Palm Beach officials updated residents Thursday on the preparations for Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to become a Category 4 storm before making landfall somewhere between Georgia and the Florida Keys on Monday morning.

RELATED: Latest on Hurricane Dorian

Officials have declared a local state of emergency in Palm Beach County, which allows the county and emergency management officials to have additional resources to prepare for the storm.

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"Residents should have food and water to last five to seven days, and prescriptions filled as soon as possible," said Verdenia Baker, the Palm Beach County Administrator.

Baker said the county will make decisions on opening emergency shelters once the storm gets closer.

For a list of hurricane shelters in Palm Beach County, click here.

Baker added there are currently no evacuation orders in Palm Beach County.

"Evacuations will be dependent on the storm surge, and will be determined on the dangers to the coast and to areas around Lake Okeechobee," said Baker, who added that residents who live away from the coast and the lake do not need to evacuate, but instead shelter in place.

Palm Beach County residents can check your evacuation zone by clicking here.

All Palm Beach County public schools will be in session as normal on Friday, Aug. 30, including elementary school after-care. However, all after-school activities and sporting events will be canceled.

The Palm Beach County EOC will be moved a Level 2 activation on Friday, meaning selected Emergency Operations Center staff members will be notified that they may be required to help.

Earlier on Thursday, West Palm Beach Mayor Keith James said the city's Emergency Operations Center is now activated.

"Our primary focus is making sure residents are safe," said Mayor James. "Please take steps now so that you are prepared."

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The mayor advised residents to have one gallon of water per person, per day for five days. He also urged residents to put together a hurricane kit. To find out what items should be in your kit, click here.

Mayor James added the city will announce evacuations at some point, so residents must know what evacuation zone they're in.

The mayor said sanitation services scheduled for Saturday have been suspended.

"Please do not do any major yard work until after the storm passes," said Mayor James, who added that residents should not put any yard debris curbside after a hurricane watch or warning have been issued.

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On Thursday, Gov. Ron DeSantis updated a state of emergency to now include all 67 counties in Florida. That declaration allows local governments and emergency management agencies to have time, resources, and flexibility to get prepared.

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