Myrtle Beach police lay out safety, traffic plans for Memorial Day weekend

Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 10:50 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - One of the busiest weekends for the city of Myrtle Beach is right around the corner.

The Myrtle Beach Police Department laid out its plan on Tuesday for Memorial Day weekend during the city council meeting.

Memorial Day weekend is May 28-30. Memorial Day is May 31.

The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce said the number of hotels and short-term rentals booked in Horry County for Memorial Day weekend is at nearly 80%. In 2019, the lodging occupancy rate was around 50% for the holiday weekend.

“We want to make sure that we have everything to keep our community and our visitors coming into town are safe,” Police Chief Amy Prock said.

“This year we will continue our presence of having a high presence of law enforcement officers,” Capt. Joey Crosby told city leaders.

This year, Crosby said an additional 300 officers will be brought in from agencies throughout the state. He said people can expect to see officers every three to four blocks along Ocean Boulevard.

“We want them to get to the know the businesses that are in that block. We want them to get to know the security guards that are in that block,” Crosby said.

Pedestrian barricades will be put up along Ocean Boulevard on May 24, which is the Monday before Memorial Day weekend.

On May 28, Ocean Boulevard will become a one-way street, while one lane will be for emergency vehicles only. To help with alternate routes, Crosby said there will be message boards along Kings Highway showing access points to get to Ocean Boulevard.

Also, a team with the South Carolina Highway Patrol will be brought in to help control the volume on the Boulevard and Kings Highway.

“Those are two areas where we’ve had accidents to occur in the past and where we’ve received complaints from citizens about that concern,” Crosby said.

The police department also revealed during Tuesday’s meeting that the 23-mile traffic loop will not be used for the second year in a row. MBPD said it’s no longer needed.

RELATED COVERAGE | City of Myrtle Beach will not use traffic loop for Memorial Day Weekend

Prock said like many places, businesses continue to struggle with staffing shortages.

She said getting the message out about what to expect is key.

“We need to make sure that when you’re coming to the beach, you’re packing your patience, you’re understanding that we all want to provide a great time here in Myrtle Beach,” Prock said.

The department will open its information call line on Friday of Memorial Day Weekend. The number is 843-918-INFO (4636).

For information on road closures and routes during Memorial Day Weekend, click here.

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