Gov. Henry McMaster’s evacuation order for Hurricane Florence is mandatory, but it is hard for state officials to enforce.
McMaster ordered the mandatory evacuation of most of the state’s coastal counties earlier this week. However, The Post and Courier reports the law which gives him the power to declare such an emergency order does not lay out any punishments for those who do not evacuate. Plus, National Guard commander Adjutant Gen. Robert Livingston told reporters Tuesday, first responders are usually busy preparing for the storm and do not have time to track down residents who remain at home.
Few states make it a crime for not following a governor’s evacuation orders.
State law does not actually use the word “mandatory.” It simply notes the governor has the power to declare an emergency and then order an evacuation.
McMaster said Tuesday that if you see storm surge inundate your home, it was your choice to remain and witness it.