Officials remind locals to have evacuation plan in place

Hurricane family planning
A map showing evacuation zones, routes and shelters in Horry County
A map showing evacuation zones, routes and shelters in Horry County

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – The Atlantic Hurricane season starts next Saturday. Officials with the Horry County Emergency Management team say now is the time to make sure families are prepared if a major storm threatens the Grand Strand.

One of the most important parts of preparing for hurricane season is to have an evacuation plan in place. This year there is a change in the available shelter in Horry County people need to know about.

The county normally has eight shelters throughout. All of them are west of the Waccamaw River and out of the evacuation zones. According to Randy Webster with the Horry County Emergency Management Office, one of the shelters will be closed this year. Loris Elementary will be remodeled this summer so it won't be available. The county was unable to find a replacement.

Webster says shelters in Horry County are first come first serve, and in the event an evacuation is issued this summer, this closure could impact dozens of families. Webster says people whose shelter of choice is Loris Elementary should plan on making a different selection for this season.

"There are other shelters in the area, it's just the fact that our capacity is even lower than what it was beforehand. So that will affect the ability to shelter a couple of hundred people," added Webster.

Webster also points out his team is working on reminding locals about the Know Your Zone message. This is the campaign the county launched last year to show the new changes to the evacuation zones.

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