Palm Beach County opens hurricane shelters Friday

September 8, 2017

With Hurricane Irma's arrival expected in Florida by Sunday, Palm Beach County plans to open 15 hurricane shelters by Friday morning. Irma is currently a Category 5 storm; Weather Channel experts believe the storm will make landfall in South Florida as a Category 4. With sustained wind speeds of 175 mph, Irma has been described by the U.S. National Hurricane Center as “potentially catastrophic.” Given the recent devastation in Houston caused by Hurricane Harvey, it is crucial to locate the nearest available shelters in order to protect family members, friends and pets.


Palm Beach County has released maps of evacuation zones, along with lists of the safest locations for people to gather in order to find shelter from the storm. Addresses in Palm Beach County can be searched at to determine which zone they belong in. Zones A and B on the map have been given mandatory evacuation orders, effective Sept. 8 at 10 a.m.; Zone A includes low-lying homes and mobile homes while Zone B encompasses barrier islands and areas near the Intracoastal Waterway. Zone C has been given voluntary evacuation orders. Hurricane shelters will open throughout the county at these schools:



  • Independence Middle School

  • Palm Beach Gardens High School

  • Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary School

  • Seminole Ridge High School

  • West Gate Elementary School

  • Forest Hill High School

  • Palm Beach Central High School

  • John I. Leonard High School

  • Park Vista High School

  • Boynton Beach High School

  • Atlantic Community High School

  • Boca Raton High School

  • West Boca Raton High School

  • Lake Shore Middle School

  • Pahokee Middle School

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