e~dusc news
SC Gov. Henry McMaster declares 'state of emergency' as Irma looms
 
[The State, September 6, 2017] S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster declared a "state of emergency" Wednesday, shortly after state forecasters warned Hurricane Irma could be a "major hurricane" when it reaches South Carolina.
The executive order allows for state agencies to coordinate efforts if a weather emergency arises.

Irma could make landfall in South Carolina as a category 3 or 4 hurricane, according to a Wednesday update by forecasters at the National Weather Service in Columbia. The powerful storm would then move inland, impacting areas as far away from the coast as the Midlands...

Read the latest on Hurricane Irma from The State here.
Photo courtesy of ABC news from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Pray for all in harm's way and for our brothers and sisters in Haiti, which is still at risk. Please share this email far and wide in the interest of the safety of all.

Hurricane Preparation

Plan an evacuation route
  • Know where to go.
  • If you are ordered to evacuate, know the local hurricane evacuation route(s) to take and have a plan for where you can stay. If emergency management officials tell you to leave town because of a hurricane threat, you should leave.
  • Contact your local emergency management office  (www.scemd.org) or American Red Cross chapter and ask for the community hurricane preparedness plan. This plan should include information on the safest evacuation routes and nearby shelters. Learn safe routes inland. Be ready to drive 20 to 50 miles inland to locate a safe place.
  • If you are not in an area that is advised to evacuate and you decide to stay in your home, plan to obtain adequate supplies in case you lose power and water for several days and you are not able to leave due to flooding or blocked roads.
Put together a go-bag
  • Your disaster supply kit should include a flashlight; a portable, battery-operated radio and extra batteries; cash and credit cards; sturdy shoes; a first aid kit and manual; emergency food and water; a non-electric can opener; medications; and copies of your critical information if you need to evacuate.
Make arrangements for pets
  • Pets might not be allowed into emergency shelters for health and space reasons. Contact your local animal protection/rescue group for information on local animal shelters in areas you might be staying.
Teach family members what to do
  • Make sure all family members know how to respond before, during and after a hurricane. Teach family members how and when to turn off gas, electricity and water. Teach children how and when to call 911, police or firefighters, and which radio station to tune to for emergency information.
  • Make a family emergency communication plan.  Many communities have text or email alert systems for emergency notifications. To find out what alerts are available in your area, search online using your town, city or county name and the word "alerts."
  • In case family members are separated during a disaster - a real possibility during the day when adults are at work and children are at school - have a plan for getting back together. Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the "family contact." After a disaster, it's often easier to call long distance. Make sure everyone in the family knows the name, address and phone number of the "family contact."
Protect your windows
  • Permanent shutters are the best protection. A lower-cost approach is to put up plywood panels. Use 1/2-inch plywood - marine plywood is best - cut to fit each window. Mark which board fits which window. Pre-drill holes every 18 inches for screws. Do this long before the storm. Trim dead or weak branches from trees to reduce the risk of their falling on your home.
Check into flood insurance
Prepare your church
  • Ask parishioners who are ready and willing to volunteer to sign up through Episcopal Relief and Development's Ready to Serve database. The Rev. Tim Ervolina, Diocesan Disaster Relief Chair, along with The Rev. Al Hipp, will coordinate volunteer help when it is most needed. A ready database is an important head start.
  • Create a video inventory of your church buildings, room by room. Perhaps a young person could take ownership of this task.
  • Please fill out your page on the Episcopal Relief and Development Asset Map. This is a valuable tool that helps churches respond effectively to disasters. Parish staff who would handle this task:
    1. Go to the link above. 2. Find your church's pin. 3. Suggest edits and add all assets and ministries.
Know what to give and do - and what not to give and do
  • In the wake of a hurricane, Episcopal Relief and Development will collect funds to help meet both the immediate and long-term needs of hurricane survivors.
  • Don't give clothes. They often become "the second disaster."
  • For more about appropriate disaster donations, click here. Thanks to our Methodist brothers and sisters for this helpful page.
  • Your gift to Episcopal Relief and Development allows for effective response from our Episcopal organization that has the manpower, infrastructure and know-how to respond in an organized and helpful way.
  • Early Response Teams go out immediately following a disaster and help families recover. It is important that the majority of the initial response be conducted by professionals. It is in the months following that the majority of "lay" help is needed to assist community recovery. Diocesan work trips to disaster areas may be planned once the damage is assessed and the initial emergency response completed.
When there is no hurricane

For Protection

Assist us mercifully, O Lord, in these our supplications and
prayers, and dispose the way of thy servants towards the
attainment of everlasting salvation; that, among all the
changes and chances of this mortal life, they may ever be
defended by thy gracious and ready help; through Jesus
Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Episcopal Diocese of Upper South Carolina | cgraves@edusc.org |
803-771-7800 | www.edusc.org
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