Myrtle Beach Braces As Hurricane Florence Nears

MYRTLE BEACH, SC – Hurricane Florence, is expected to impact the South Carolina coast overnight.

“Wind and strong rain is what we have to worry about,” said one woman walking on the beach.

Millions of people in South Carolina are in the storm’s path. Myrtle Beach is boarded up. The town shut down.

Police are patrolling and enforcing a 7 pm to 7 am curfew.

“We’re still looking at 48 hours of hurricane conditions,” said Mark Kruea, the Myrtle Beach Public Information Officer.

City officials have ordered people living near the ocean to leave.

“That’s why you evacuate is to get away from the storm surge,” said Kruea.

The storm surge is expected to be six to eight feet. That means ocean water will be brushing up against the bottom of Pier 14.

Nearly half a million South Carolinians have listened to evacuation orders. Thousands more people have made their way to shelters.

“Just Incase the rain comes and we can’t get out, it’s best to just go ahead and get out now,” said Lawania Servis.

She came to the Conway high school shelter on Tuesday.

“We played cards. Sat around and eat of course,” said Sarvis.

She’s been Praying for Florence to have mercy. Hoping her city is prepared.

“I feel like we are more than ready for what’s coming. Whatever that may be,” said Brenda Bethune, the Myrtle Beach Mayor.

Mayor Bethune says they have the resources ready to respond, but Florence has already hurt their tourism economy.

“The fact that we don’t have anything else to help sustain us, it really does hurt our businesses,” said Bethune.

Roughly 18 million people visit Myrtle Beach each year. Mayor Bethune tells me it’s imperative that they get power on and businesses back open as soon as the storm passes.

With preparations for Florence mostly complete. Myrtle Beach now waits.

“There is a false sense that just because the storm has been downgraded it makes it less severe. That is not the case with this storm,” said Bethune.