Dear Friends and Neighbors,
Although Hurricane Irma has moved west of South Carolina, we will be impacted by this storm. In the Midlands area alone, we are expecting heavy rain and strong winds of up to 30-40 mph.
Please remember these important checklist items during this storm:
Charge your electronic devices and fuel your vehicle in case you lose power.
Carry in all outdoor grills and lawn furniture.
Secure boats and other watercraft.
Power outages may limit access to ATMs and restrict use of credit cards -- keep plenty of cash on hand.
Heed the warnings of our local officials.
Please continue to monitor weather updates from official channels.
Our state emergency management authorities are often the best resource for immediate needs in our community and can be found here, http://scemd.org.
Be aware of hazards created by strong-winds and flooding, including downed power lines and areas with standing water.
In preparation for potential impacts from Hurricane Irma, Governor McMaster issued an executive order requiring dam owners to evaluate their lakes or ponds to determine if water levels can be safely lowered to accommodate incoming flows. It also requires coordinating releases of water with other dam owners and/or property owners downstream, as necessary. I have been advised that the dams in House District 78 (Beaver Dam, Carey Lake, Forest Lake, Lower and Upper Rockyford, and Springlake) have been working in coordination with each other and with DHEC.
As of this afternoon, 20 counties have announced school district and government office building closings, including the City of Columbia and Richland County offices which will be closed tomorrow. Richland School Districts One and Two also will be closed. For a complete listing of businesses and/or schools that are closed, please visit http://www.wistv.com/category/202531/closings-page or https://ed.sc.gov/districts-schools/schools/district-and-school-closures/
If needed, please visit http://scemd.org/shelters-rss for a full listing of open shelters with availability.
The Governor has announced the following TeamSC numbers:
579 National Guardsmen on duty
100 State troopers assisting local law enforcement
89 State Guardsmen on duty
121 SLED, PPP, DNR agents on duty
11 shelters open with 264 occupants
54,500 sandbags prepared by the Department of Corrections with 11,500distributed so far.
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Please be safe and stay vigilant!