NEWBERRY — Hurricane Michael is making its way to South Carolina, and the National Weather Service is expecting winds up to 30 to 40 miles per hour, with gusts to 50 miles per hour starting tonight through tomorrow in the eastern Midlands.
Michael’s current storm tracks across southern Georgia and central South Carolina.
They are also saying there will be three to five inches of rain across the area and there will be an elevated threat of tornadoes.
Hurricane Michael is expected to strengthen to a Category Three, with gusty winds, flash flooding and isolated tornadoes possible beginning tonight. The National Weather Service has increased confidence in tropical storm impacts, starting as early as midday today and lasting until tomorrow evening. However, hurricane wind speeds are not expected in the Midlands, officials said.
With the increased chance of tropical storm winds, this could cause numerous downed trees, and power outages that could last a couple of days.
Heavy rain is also expected tonight through Thursday, up to five inches. The National Weather Service has low confidence in river flooding, they said.
“The City of Newberry recently went through the same type of planning and preparedness procedures with Tropical Storm Florence and we are preparing and are as ready as possible for Hurricane Michael. The City is working closely with the Newberry County Emergency Operations Center to make sure we have the latest information and are prepared for what this storm will bring Newberry’s way,” City Manager Matt DeWitt said.
Debra Shaw, vice president of members and public relations with the Newberry Electric Cooperative, said they are continuously monitoring Hurricane Michael.
“We are stocked up with needed materials and our crews are on standby. We are prepared to respond if the need arises,” she said.
The Newberry County Sheriff’s Office recommends to secure loose items in yards such as lawn furniture, hanging plants, flags and sporting hardware. These items can become airborne and cause further damage to people and property.
They also suggest that you have flashlights and batteries in case there are power outages. Do not attempt to move any trees that have fallen due to the possibilities of power lines being entangled. Do not try to move any utility lines that have fallen due to hazards.
If roads are closed, do not drive around barricades or cones, they said.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.