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Hurricane dry spell worries Charleston County officials - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Hurricane dry spell worries Charleston County officials

Map shows areas most likely inundated by storm surge of a Category 2 hurricane Map shows areas most likely inundated by storm surge of a Category 2 hurricane
Cathy Haynes, Director of Emergency Management - Charleston County Cathy Haynes, Director of Emergency Management - Charleston County
Waves off Folly Beach Waves off Folly Beach

The 2011 Hurricane season is upon us. For Charleston, it has been almost 22 years since a hurricane put the Lowcountry in its cross hairs. And that dry spell in between storms worries county officials.

"There's been a big turnover in population since [19]89," says Cathy Haynes, Director of Charleston Counties Emergency Management Division.

The director says a lot has changed since Hugo. 

"We have a lot of new folks coming into town, moving into the area," says Haynes. "They've never really experienced a hurricane and they don't know what to do."

Haynes believes the population turnover and the Lowcountry adding 20,000 residents since the 1990 census, leaves most without real storm experience and knowledge of how to deal with issues that arise in a storm.

More so this year than in years past, Haynes says her team will hit the streets to get out simple messages that may help save lives. From evacuation routes closest to your homes to information about a hurricane's number one killer, storm surge.

"It's the reason we're called the Lowcountry because all this is very low," says Haynes as she looked over a map of the coast and parts of Charleston's peninsula. "It's very susceptible to flooding."

Because Wednesday kicks off Hurricane season, Haynes says she is already started reaching out coastal communities, church groups and civic clubs to come out and share information about staying safe if the worst was to happen.

Copyright WCSC 2011.  All rights reserved.

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