Officials tout prep, storm reports as Atlantic hurricane season begins
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Hurricane season has officially kicked off with the start of June. Meteorologists at the National Weather Service in Charleston say they expect a year similar to last year.
Senior Meteorologist Neil Dixon says he expects between 12 and 17 named storms, between five and nine of those could be hurricanes with one to four of them becoming major hurricanes. While Hurricane Ian made landfall last season and only brought flooding and some property damage, Dixon says everyone needs to stay prepared for the next major storm.
“It’s easy to be complacent especially since we have seen tropical storm watches and warnings in the last couple years,” Dixon said. “It’s best to remember that every storm is going to be different, and it really only takes one significant storm to make a real difference.”
Hurricane season may have officially started this week, but Dixon says they started last weekend by monitoring the coastal storm that came ashore and brought with it 3 inches of rain and wind gusts of up to 46 miles per hour in some areas.
Dixon is also encouraging the public to help with storm reports. He says they will take any information they can get. While official reports submitted to their website or through email are ideal, he says simply tweeting a picture or a video of storm damage, rain totals, wind speeds or water levels helps them verify storm activity.
“A lot of time we put that information directly into our warnings,” Dixon said. “If a member of the public reported that so and so intersection is flooded due to rain. We will put that in, so when someone hears about it on the weather radio or reads it on the web page that they can identify that area.”
Getting prepared early is the key to weathering any potential storm. Dixon says the number one thing you need to know is how to evacuate.
You can look up your evacuation route here: https://hurricane.sc/evacuate.
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