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Get Ready for Hurricane Season During a Pandemic with Orange County Sandbag, Face Mask Distribution Starting on Thursday

Photo: Shashank Sahay
Photo: Shashank Sahay

Orange County residents with a valid ID, and a face mask, will be able to pick up ten sandbags a-person at five parks and recreation locations in the area starting on Thursday. 

Residents will be able to collect the sandbags along with a kit with face masks and hand sanitizer at participating Orange County sites seven days a week, from 8 am to 8 pm, July 16th through the 30th. 

The hurricane supplies are available on a first-come, first-served basis and people are encouraged to bring their own shovel to fill up their bags. 

Orange County Assistant Emergency Manager Carlos Durden says now’s a good time to stock up on other hurricane supplies as well.

“Stock up now with nonperishable foods, stock up now with water. So when something does happen, you’re not in that frenzy, or that crowd that's running in the store panicking because everything is sold out.”

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Durden says if there's a hurricane, in most cases people should plan on sheltering-in-place at home to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

“Now, the ones that we’re telling to seek shelters are if you are in a mobile home, or manufactured home. If you're in a low-lying community that floods a lot. Or if you're in an evacuation zone, then we’re telling you to seek shelters.”

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He says his team has been working with the Orange County School Board to identify 39 shelters with adequate social distancing.

Each of the shelters will hand out face masks.

If you'd like to listen to this story, click on the clips above.

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.