OCALA — Marion County has prepared its resources to extend a helping hand to those affected by Hurricane Michael along the panhandle.
The Ocala International Airport off of South West 60th Avenue has cleared terminal and acreage to allow for trucks and crews to stage before heading into the panhandle area.
County departments have also made arrangements to assist, including the agricultural extension and livestock pavilion that are offering shelter. The pavilion can accommodate dogs, goats, horses and any livestock that can be contained in its stalls. The county departments are also offering free campgrounds to those who have been displaced by the storm.
The Marion County Search and Rescue sent a team up north to pair up with a Jacksonville crew. This team is specialized in search, extraction, and emergency medical care and will be working over the panhandle area as far north as Saint Marks.
As the devastating affects of Michael are currently being evaluated, the county has prepared and planned to help in anyway possible to restore the panhandle community.
At this time, traffic to the heavily affected areas is closed, except to official disaster relief teams. To find other ways you can help with relief efforts, please visit redcross.org