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Keep informed: Hurricane information, important links
Pinellas prepares for arrival of Hurricane Frances
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PINELLAS COUNTY - Agencies throughout the county are making preparations for the arrival of Hurricane Frances.

Thursday afternoon, it was announced that public schools in the county would be closed on Friday to allow officials time to prepare them to serve as shelters if needed.

Also on Thursday, it was announced that the Board of County Commissioners and the Disaster Advisory Committee would be meeting Friday to discuss the response to Hurricane Frances. The committee will meet at 9 a.m. at the Largo Training Center, 203 N. Highland Ave., Largo. The commissioners will meet at 11 a.m. in the Assembly Room, 315 Court St, Clearwater.

For more information about developments in the county, visit the Pinellas County Web site at www.pinellascounty.org/default.htm or tune into Pinellas 18 TV. For information on hurricane preparedness, visit www.pinellascounty.org/emergency/Local.htm.

Lodging updates available for evacuees coming to Pinellas County

As the state plans for the impact of Hurricane Frances, the St. Petersburg/Clearwater Area Convention and Visitor's Bureau (CVB) is working with accommodations, attractions and restaurants in the area to continuously monitor and keep everyone informed of the current situation.

According to a release from the CVB, as of Thursday evening, all accommodations, attractions, beaches and restaurants were open. Several properties were at capacity, however, some rooms were still available.

The area has more than 150 accommodations that accept pets. Several area properties are allowing evacuees from other areas in the state to bring their pets during the storm situation.

Evacuees seeking accommodations in the St. Petersburg and/or Clearwater area are encouraged to visit www.floridasbeach.com/news/frances.aspx. People also can call (877) 352-3224 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Weather news

For the latest information on Frances, visit the National Weather Service's Hurricane Center. Information also is available at TBNWeekly's tropical weather center and hurricane information center.
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