South Carolina is about to hit the height of its hurricane season, and like last year, it has had a quiet start. However, officials are watching a tropical system forming in the Lesser Antilles, now named Tropical Storm Emily.
Though it has been relatively quiet off of the coast, the Atlantic has been busy, says SC Emergency Management Division spokesman Derrec Becker says we’ve had four named storms so far (make that five today) and that the state knows all too well that the hardest hurricanes can happen in September. That’s when Hurricane Hugo slammed into Charleston and cut a swath all the way to Charlotte, NC.
The division also got a new director at the beginning of the hurricane season. The state’s Adjutant General Robert Livingston tapped George H. McKinney II who has some experience with the agency.
McKinney came from Greenwood, as the director of the department of public safety.
“That chair can be pretty big at times, but the fact that George has already been here, been an EMD employee on the nuclear side has only served to help him as far as becoming familiar with the state Emergency Operations Center, who the players are, what the plans are and how to interface with them. Our main thing is making sure the counties and the local first responders have the support that they need,” says Becker.
Becker says the governor has also been actively involved since she took office and has been at their headquarters a few times already.
“She has recognized that this something that you have to learn about, that you have to brought up to speed on right away,” Becker says.
The updated state hurricane guide is available for download at scemd.org