Folly Beach, Isle of Palms making preparations for Hurricane Irma

Sand Bags (WCIV)

It’s still too early to tell exactly how or if the monstrous Hurricane Irma will impact South Carolina, but beach communities are already preparing for the worst.

Only time will tell which path Hurricane Irma will take. But on Folly Beach and Isle of Palms, they know it’s better to be ready than to have to get ready.

The Isle of Palms and Folly Beach on Tuesday started offering sand to residents who wish to fill their own sandbags and use them to protect their property.

The two beach towns are home to thousands of people and businesses. In the event Hurricane Irma makes a direct hit on South Carolina, they would be among the worst impacted.

Folly Beach Mayor, Tim Goodwin, is asking everyone to pay attention in the event of an evacuation.

“We need to watch it close. Listen to the meteorologists and pay attention to evacuation notices,“ Goodwin said Tuesday.

Last year, rain, winds and storm surge from Category 1 Hurricane Matthew caused flooding and damage along South Carolina's coast in places such as Folly, and also for miles inland.

Goodwin hopes folks along Folly will board and pack up if Hurricane Irma becomes a threat to Charleston County.

“You don't want to be caught the last person evacuting and trying to compete with (traffic from) Georgia, or Northern Florida or whoever else,” Goodwin said.

Mayor Goodwin said Folly Beach has adopted a new plan for business owners returning to the beach if an evacuation is necessary.

“This pass also gives them an opportunity to bring a percentage of their workers back who are not residence of Folly Beach," Goodwin said. "Their employers hand them out to the ones they want to get back.”

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