TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) – Several coronavirus testing sites in some of the hardest-hit areas of Florida will be shut down for the weekend as the National Hurricane Center monitors what could become the first named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season.
The area of low pressure has a 70 percent chance of developing within the next 48 hours. The NHC says it will bring heavy rain and winds that could reach tropical-storm-force to the Florida Keys and Southeast Florida in the coming days.
“A low-pressure system currently near the Florida Keys is anticipated to move northward offshore of Florida’s East Coast and could produce wind gusts up to 40 mph, lightning and the potential for severe thunderstorms with heavy rain,” state officials said.
In response to that expected weather, Florida’s Division of Emergency Management announced it’s closing 14 COVID-19 testing sites through the weekend. The sites are mostly located in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties.
Ten of the sites are state-supported drive-thru testing sites. Four are state-supported walk-up testing sites. All 14 sites will be closed on Friday, May 15. They will reopen Monday, May 18.
The following drive-thru sites are closing:
- Brevard Eastern Florida State College – Palm Bay Campus in Brevard County
- CB Smith Park in Broward County
- Broward War Memorial in Broward County
- Amelia Earhart Park in Miami-Dade County
- Hard Rock Stadium in Miami-Dade County
- Marlins Stadium in Miami-Dade County
- Miami Beach Convention Center in Miami-Dade County
- FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in Palm Beach County
- South County Civic Center in Delray Beach in Palm Beach County
- Volusia University High School in Volusia County
The following walk-up testing sites are closing:
- Mitchell Moore Park in Broward County
- Urban League in Broward County
- Holy Family Catholic Church in Miami-Dade County
- Lakeside Hospital in Palm Beach County
“These sites will be closed on Friday to allow staff to safely breakdown equipment and will remain closed through Sunday to allow staff to set up the sites after the conditions have passed. Testing will resume for normal hours on Monday,” FDEM officials said in an email news release.
Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties have been hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Miami-Dade has 14,742 confirmed cases as of Thursday evening, according to Florida’s Department of Health. Broward has 6,057 cases and Palm Beach has 4,278.
All other state-supported testing sites will remain open throughout the weekend with normal hours. You can find a testing site on the FDEM website.
LATEST ON THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC:
- Florida coronavirus: State surpasses 1.6 million cases, 454 new hospitalizations
- More than a dozen Capitol officers sick with COVID-19, report says
- New CDC director takes over beleaguered agency amid crisis
- 103-year-old man who lived through Spanish flu, polio outbreak gets COVID-19 vaccine
- SAT doing away with optional essay and subject tests