Hurricane Survival Guide: Monroe evacuation and shelters

Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images
Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images

Monroe In-County Shelters are opened during Category 1 or 2 hurricanes only.

Monroe County Shelters will not be open in a Category 3, 4, or 5 Hurricane.

Monroe County residents seeking public shelter will be directed to a designated location on the mainland. This shelter information and its’ location will be provided in a timely manner to ensure that everyone evacuates out of the county safely. It is important for all residents to listen to the local media, Monroe County TV 76 and call the emergency information hotline at (800) 955-5504 for detailed information.

Monroe County Special Needs residents will be transported to the Special Needs shelter at the Florida International University in Miami. If you are a Special Needs person and will be transporting yourself, please follow the Florida Turnpike Extension from Florida City to US 41/SW 8th Street Exit 25 and once at the FIU campus, proceed and report to the Recreation Center at 11200 SW 8th Street.

The purpose of a Shelter is to provide a safe haven from the storm. Do not expect substantial meals or comfort items. If you want special foods, bedding or entertainment, you must provide it yourself. No medical care will be available at these shelters. If you expect to need medical care, you should make your own arrangements to evacuate to a medical facility on the mainland.

Under Categories 1 and 2 hurricanes there will be Pet Friendly Shelters open throughout Monroe County to allow those seeking refuge from the storm to bring their pets with them. Pet owners must bring vaccination records, leashes, collars, appropriate size cages, food and special diet, three day water supply and bowl, sheets, blanket, towel, muzzles, flea spray, grooming supplies, first aid kit, and any medication pet requires. It is important to note, Monroe County Shelters will not be open in a Category 3, 4, or 5 Hurricane.

In Category 3 or higher storms, once an evacuation order has been issued, Monroe County residents, seeking public shelter on the mainland, will be informed of the shelter locations. Please note that sheltering options may include; Florida International University, the E. Darwin Fuchs Pavilion at the Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition (which will allow residents to shelter with their pets), and other facilities within Miami-Dade County, based on their availability on a per storm basis. Information will be disseminated via local media, TV Channel 76 as well as both, County and Emergency Management websites.

Monroe County Pet Friendly Shelters

Key West High School

2100 Flagler Avenue, Key West


Sugarloaf School

225 Crane Boulevard

Sugarloaf Key, MM #19


Marathon High School

350 Sombrero Beach Road

Marathon, MM #50


Coral Shores High School

89591 Old Highway

Plantation Key, MM #89.9

Hurricane Survival Guide