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Officials encourage prep as hurricane season starts in SC

May 29, 2022 GMT

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — With hurricane season starting Wednesday, South Carolina emergency officials want residents to prepare.

Gov. Henry McMaster has proclaimed Hurricane Preparedness Week starting Sunday.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division is emphasizing this year that people know their evacuation zone, how to prepare their home to ride out a storm and what highways they need to take to evacuate with the slogan “Know Your Zone, Prepare Your Home, Remember Your Route.”

Preparing your home not only includes checking your hurricane shutters and roof, but also making sure that you have the right kind and right amount of insurance, the agency said.

And it’s not just coastal homes that need to prepare. Recent hurricanes to hit South Carolina have brought massive floods inland and can also bring tornadoes and high winds well away from the coast.

Health officials said residents should also make sure their COVID-19 boosters and vaccinations are up to date and include masks and other disease-fighting items in their hurricane kits in case they need to evacuate to areas where there is high spread of disease.

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Four hurricanes have directly or indirectly impacted South Carolina in the past six years, prompting evacuations for Hurricane Matthew in 2016, Hurricane Irma in 2017, Hurricane Florence in 2018 and Hurricane Dorian in 2019.

Meteorologists are predicting an above average number of hurricanes and tropical storms this year.