Major changes to county hurricane evacuation zones - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Major changes to Horry Co. hurricane evacuation zones

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Emergency Management Director Randy Webster said advances in technology allowed FEMA and the US Army Corps of Engineers to determine more areas in Horry County will likely be affected should a hurricane hit. Emergency Management Director Randy Webster said advances in technology allowed FEMA and the US Army Corps of Engineers to determine more areas in Horry County will likely be affected should a hurricane hit.

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) Horry County Emergency Management officials are instituting some big changes to hurricane evacuation zones.

As part of the county's "Know Your Zone" campaign, Horry County Emergency Management will work to inform people living in newly designed hurricane evacuation zones of the dangers they could face.

Emergency Management Director Randy Webster said advances in technology allowed FEMA and the US Army Corps of Engineers to determine more areas in Horry County will likely be affected should a hurricane hit.

"Now because the modeling of the storm surge is...technologically better, there's a lot more people impacted to the west of the Intracoastal Waterway," Webster said.

Magoo's Sports and Spirits bar owner James Mulvanerton said he moved west of the Intracoastal waterway eight years, and was shocked to find out his business and his home could be impacted, according to new evacuation zones.

"I was kind of counting on the fact and hoping that us being on the west side of the waterway, we're fairly safe to not worry about evacuations," Mulvanerton said. "That sounds like major overkill."

Webster said he worries people will look at storms that missed the Grand Strand such as Hurricane Irene in 2011, and not take evacuations seriously.

"Because of storms like Irene, a lot of people are going to wait and see," Webster said. "And that's going to crunch that time [to evacuate] down even more to where a lot of people have to get out in a smaller amount of time. My fear is they end up on the road, and it's too late."

For more information on hurricane preparedness and Horry County's "Know Your Zone," visit the Horry County Emergency Management website.

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