As Hurricane Irene intensified today I made sure I knew what plans my friends and family had in place in the event the storm makes a direct track for Murrells Inlet. One of my least favorite parts about owning property east of Highway 17 in Murrells Inlet is the fact that it is in an evacuation zone should a Hurricane evacuation order be issued for coastal South Carolina. While it is my hope I or any of my Murrells Inlet neighbors will never have to follow a storm plan it is one of the necessary elements anyone living near the ocean must have in place.
1. Make plans in advance! If you do not have an evacuation plan and live in an evacuation zone you need to make one now. Where will you go and what will you take with you? Make your plan now and you will be ready when a storm threatens the South Carolina coast.
2. Pay attention to weather updates. A Hurricane track can and does change often and knowing the current projections for any storm is as important as having a plan of action in the event a storm is going to hit the Murrells Inlet area.
3. In advance of any storm threats make plans for protecting your home. Having Hurricane shutters or other devices that could help prevent damage in case of strong winds. Be sure to always cut tree limbs off your roof and your homes exterior that could cause damage during times of heavy winds.
4. Make sure to secure all loose objects in your yard. Anything you have outside could become a missle in the event of Tropical Storm or Hurricane force winds. This should be part of your overall Hurricane Plan. When will you gather them up and where will you store them?
5. Evacuate if ordered by government officials. Evacuation orders should be followed in the event of any storm and if you are in an evacuation zone know the route you will take to your destination. If a Hurricane warning is issued you will be notified 36 hours prior to the storm hitting land. Play it safe and don’t wait!
For further information and tips for creating your storm plans check out the following resources.