By DEUCE NIVEN
Idalia, a category 3 hurricane when it slammed into Florida Tuesday night, is expected to be a tropical storm by the time she impacts the greater Tabor-Loris Community late tonight (Wednesday) into Thursday morning, National Weather Service data showed.
Both Columbus County and Horry County school facilities will be closed Thursday, with students in both systems instructed to go to virtual learning protocols for the day. Students unable to do so do to lack of power, Internet, or other reasons will be given an opportunity to make up their work, district leaders said.
Other schedule changes announced by Wednesday afternoon included:
- Columbus County offices will operate on a two-hour delay Thursday.
- Courts in Columbus County are cancelled for Thursday.
- Horry County government offices closed at 5 p.m. Wednesday, and are planning to delay opening until 10 a.m. Thursday.
- All Horry County Parks & Recreation centers, ball fields, and parks closed at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
- Residential and commercial garbage collection in Columbus County will be pushed forward by one day. Garbage typically picked up on Thursday will be collected Friday, with Friday’s trash to be picked up Saturday, both county and collection service spokespeople said. Columbus County’s solid waste transfer station will also be closed Thursday.
- Horry County Solid Waste Authority facilities will operate under normal hours Thursday, with the exception of recycling centers, which will delay opening until 9 a.m.
- Southeastern Community College and Horry-Georgetown Technical College will be closed Thursday. Coastal Carolina University transitioned to online instruction Wednesday, and is expected to resume classroom instruction Friday.
Tropical storm conditions are expected overnight and into the early morning. Public safety officials encourage the public to closely monitor weather outlets.
Tropical storm warnings were in effect for all of Columbus and Horry counties, all adjacent counties, and offshore, the National Weather Service reported.
We urge citizens to remain calm and take appropriate precautions,” a news release from Columbus County government said. “For more information on hurricane preparedness, please see https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes.”
Sustained winds from 25 to 30 miles per hour are expected in inland areas of northeastern South Carolina and southeastern North Carolina, those winds expected to be highest tonight into Thursday morning. Gusts from 35 to 45 miles per hour are also expected.
Flooding is also expected in inland areas throughout the region. Moderate flooding is also expected along the Lumber River, the NWS reported.
An enhanced risk of tornadoes comes with the hurricane/tropical storm. Everyone should monitor alerts through smartphones, weather radios, or broadcast media.
Look for updates here as events warrant, and full reporting in the next Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.