CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Hundreds of thousands of people are preparing for the possibility that Hurricane Florence could have severe impacts in the Lowcountry.
On Monday afternoon, Gov. Henry McMaster called for a mandatory evacuation of all coastal communities in South Carolina.
Starting at noon on Tuesday, eastbound lanes of I-26 will be reversed to take people away from Charleston.
"We do not want to risk one South Carolina life in this hurricane," McMaster said.
A lot of people spent Monday still picking up last minute supplies ahead of the storm.
Aisles for water at many grocery stores were barren and lines for gas continued to grow.
"You know, lines out to the streets," Charleston resident Josh Foster said. "It's preventing people from driving and continuing about their day."
At home in the City of Charleston, it's all hands on deck.
"Our personnel and assets are here to support the safety of our citizens and to support the governor's order," Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg said.
Tecklenburg's message during Monday's press conference was that it's better to be safe than sorry.
As people take advantage of the calm before the storm to finish last minute preparations, they're left hoping for the best and waiting for certainty.
"One minute it could be a Category 4 coming right for us, the next minute it could be not even hitting us at all. So it just feels very up in the air," West Ashley resident Danielle Pollack said.
There will be buses from CARTA that will take people to shelters starting at noon on Tuesday.
Crews from the City of Charleston have also worked to clear drainage areas and reduce the amount of water in man made lakes, like Colonial Lake.