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Storms and Natural Disasters

How to Prepare

Have a Plan

In the event of any storm or natural disaster, it is important to have a plan for you and your family. You may not all be together during the weather event, so plan out how you will communicate with each other, what you will do during an emergency, etc.

Horry County Emergency Management leads the county’s emergency response plan for our area.

Emergency Kit/Supplies Checklist

  • NOAA Weather Radio with battery-backup
  • Cell phone with portable charger
  • First Aid Kit
  • Flashlights and extra batteries
  • Portable, battery-powered radio
  • At least a three days’ supply of water and non-perishable foods (NOTE: An average person needs about one gallon of water per day)
  • Planned evacuation route and an alternate route
  • Full tank of gas in your vehicle – you may get stuck in traffic or gas stations could be closed
  • Emergency cash – ATMs and banks may be closed
  • Important documents, insurance papers for home/business/property/vehicles
  • Change of clothes
  • Medications, toiletries
  • Baby formula, diapers, necessities
  • Pet food, water, necessities

Before the Storm

  • Stay tuned in to local radio and TV stations or The Weather Channel for the most up-to-date information on severe weather.
    • For hurricanes, tune in to the National Hurricane Center for risk information.
  • Have a location away from home set up, in case you need to evacuate.
  • Have a plan for your pets. Check with hotels or friends to see if it is acceptable to bring your pets.
  • Secure any loose outdoor furniture and other items.
  • Store gasoline for your generator, if you have one, as power outages could occur for several days and even weeks.
  • Turn off propane tanks and unplug any small appliances.

Taking Shelter

  • During a hurricane
    • Stay away from windows and doors.
    • Stay indoors until the storm is over.
    • Do not use your generator until after the storm has passed.
    • Secure your pets.
    • Get to higher ground or a second level of your home if flooding occurs.
    • Do not use any electrical appliances, outlets, switches, etc. if flooding occurs.
  • During a tornado
    • Go to a storm cellar or basement, if you have one. If not, go to a windowless interior room, such as a bathroom or closet, on the lowest level of your home.
    • If you’re outside, try to get into a nearby building. If shelter isn’t available or there isn’t time, lie in a ditch, low-lying area, or crouch near a strong building.

After the Storm

  • Use your phone for emergency calls only. Telephone lines may be flooded with calls in disaster situations. Keep the lines open for emergencies.
  • Wait for the authorities to give the word when it is safe and acceptable to return to your home or business.
  • Take pictures of damage to your home to send to your insurance company as soon as possible. Ask your insurance agent for a list of trusted contractors when assessing damage.
  • Check on your neighbors, especially the elderly and disabled, to make sure they’re safe.
  • If you had to evacuate, check with Horry Electric to see if power has been disconnected before you enter the home or business.
  • Make sure you have the necessary documents to prove you own a home, property or business in the area.