MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCSC) - Mount Pleasant’s mayor said the town will move immediately to its highest level of emergency preparedness based on the latest forecasts on Ian.
“Our preparation has been underway for quite some time but with the new forecast, we’re moving to a new level of readiness in response,” Mayor Will Haynie said during a Thursday afternoon briefing.
That forecast calls for Ian, which emerged from the east side of the Florida peninsula as a tropical storm, to strengthen back into a hurricane before making landfall. The entire South Carolina coast is under a hurricane warning.
“Hurricane Ian’s forecasted track has continued to shift slightly farther east and north, placing Mount Pleasant at significant risk for hurricane-force winds and potentially dangerous flooding due to a combination of storm surge, heavy rain and high tides,” he said.
Haynie said Friday’s high tide is estimated to be at 8.7 feet at 10:40 a.m.
“The storm surge is now estimated to possibly be between four and seven feet. We could get four to eight inches of rain on top of that, with 12 inches possible in some areas,” he said. “We know that there is significant flooding risk and we need to keep ourselves prepared for that.”
Haynie said now is the time to prepare for Ian if they have not already done so.
“My mantra during this whole episode has been, ‘There is no downside to over preparing. There is huge risk to underpreparing or going out when you don’t have to,” he said. “Our first responders are doing a great job. We don’t want to make them work any harder than they have to in a situation like this or put their lives at any more risk than is necessary.”
Emergency personnel and equipment are ready to respond and are staged in three schools at three zones across the town for rapid response, he said.
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