COLUMBIA, SC (WCSC) - The South Carolina Emergency Management Division increased its operating condition to Level 4 Thursday ahead of Tropical Storm Hermine's projected arrival.
Forecasters are predicting windy conditions and heavy rain along the South Carolina coast along with the possibility of tornadoes.
SCEMD officials are encouraging South Carolina residents to monitor the situation, make plans and take precautions.
Operational Condition Level 4 is the second lowest of five levels, and denotes an elevated level of awareness, which includes reviewing plans and procedures.
The State Emergency Operations Center will be staffed by select state agency personnel beginning Friday morning to be in position to assist local authorities with state assets should the need arise.
"We are learning forward and following this storm, and we encourage people in South Carolina to do the same," SCEMD Director Kim Stenson said. "Personal preparedness, personal plans, and awareness are very important in a situation such as this."
The Division is asking residents also to monitor the storm and to plan ahead, prepare early, and never underestimate the dangers of flood waters.
Never drive or walk through flood waters. Remember that flooding can disrupt electricity and the drinking water supply. Flood waters can also carry hazardous materials that can endanger health, either upon contact with the water itself or with the soggy debris left after the flood.
The South Carolina Emergency Management Division will continue to monitor the storm 24 hours a day.