South Carolina governor Nikki Haley has ordered the evacuation of nearly 1.1 million people who live on the coast of South Carolina and has declared a state of emergency as hurricane Matthew approaches the state. You can view the press conference in its entirety below:
Greenville County schools will be open Wednesday, but no school bus routes will run. Greenville County is sending 235 regular school buses and 108 special needs school buses to help evacuate residents from the Lowcountry ahead of Hurricane Matthew, according to a statement from the district.
“Students who are coded as bus riders and cannot find alternate transportation will be excused; all other students will be marked absent if they are not in attendance. We have made the decision to remain open because we believe it is the most helpful one for our families, particularly those who have young students who are unable to stay home by themselves. All field trips are cancelled for Wednesday.”
Gov. Nikki Haley announced plans to evacuate more than 1 million residents from the coastal areas of South Carolina in a news conference held Tuesday afternoon at the South Carolina Emergency Management Division. Haley said lane reversals will begin on the Interstate 26 corridor and other highways leaving the coast at 3 p.m. Wednesday.
The Carolinas are bracing for a possible direct hit from Hurricane Matthew. The projected track from the National Hurricane Center shifted west overnight, with a possible direct hit to North and South Carolina coasts.
“I would love nothing more than to see this just suddenly take a right hand turn and head back out to sea, but as of right now, we’re looking at Friday night into Saturday being pretty brutal,” Haley said.
The evacuations are not labeled mandatory or voluntary anymore, Haley said. “An evacuation is an evacuation.” She is urging people to go ahead and leave if they can, because the evacuation process will not be quick.
Gov. Haley said the goal is to get everyone on or near the coast to move at least 100 miles inland before the storm’s projected impact this weekend. You can find information regarding your evacuation routes using this link: http://www.sctraffic.org/evacroutes.html.
45 school districts, as far inland as Richland County, will be closed beginning Wednesday.
Greenville and most of the Upstate is still not in the direct path of the storm.
The Category 4 storm barreled through the Caribbean killing at least two fishermen over the weekend. It approached Haiti with top sustained winds near 145 mph, up from earlier speeds. “The threat to Florida and the southeastern U.S. coast has increased,” the National Hurricane Center said.
North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory issued a state of emergency for 66 of the state’s 100 counties Monday afternoon. Meteorologists say whether or not it’s a direct hit, massive waves can be expected along the Carolina coast later this week.
In Charleston, Charleston Southern University, College of Charleston and The Citadel all plan to close Tuesday night and remain closed until further notice.
The Citadel has also canceled Parents Weekend and all associated events. The Citadel will close at 5:30 this evening in accordance with the mandatory evacuation of the South Carolina coast issued by Gov. Nikki Haley due to Hurricane Matthew.
- Evening classes are cancelled.
- Parents’ Weekend is canceled along with all classes and activities until the evacuation is lifted. (Parents Weekend to be held next weekend, details pending.)
- Cadets will be released for departure as soon as possible tonight. Protocols are in progress to ensure that all cadets have transportation home or to safe locations. Parents should communicate directly with their cadets for specific details.
- Faculty and staff should prepare their homes and plan their evacuations. Only emergency operations staff will report to campus on Wednesday, Oct. 5.
When the evacuation is lifted, cadets, students, faculty and staff will be advised about return procedures.
Images regarding the latest information (as of 5pm Tuesday October 4th) on this storms strength and potential path are below.