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CURRENT EMERGENCY ALERTS & UPDATES

Georgetown County is currently at Operating Condition (OPCON) 2 as it continues to monitor the spread of COVID-19 (also known as the coronavirus). OPCON 2 represents an enhanced awareness surrounding a situation that is likely to impact Georgetown County. A State of Emergency has been declared and most county facilities are temporarily closed to the public until further notice.

Learn more about our OPCON Levels

 

Coronavirus Information:

 

View Resources for those impacted by COVID-19

View the Governor's Executive Orders

Download A Door Sign Regarding COVID-19 Symptoms & Precautions

Download a COVID-19 Informational Sign from SCDHEC

How face masks should fit

 

All County Announcements Regarding COVID-19:

 

County Council passes ordinance requiring face masks
July 2, 2020

Beginning July 3, employees and members of the public will be required to wear masks that cover the nose and mouth in Georgetown County businesses, including grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants and retail stores. Restaurant patrons are exempt while dining, but employees must wear a mask at all times while having face-to-face interaction with the public.

Businesses are required to post written notification at their main entrance notifying customers of the new law. One may be downloaded below, or businesses may create their own.

The ordinance will be in place for 60 days, unless terminated sooner by council. Anyone found in violation of the ordinance may be fined for each offense.

Download a sign for your business

View the complete ordinance

The right way to wear a mask

Taking care of your mask

Why should I wear a mask

 

Residents advised to continue to take precautions as COVID-19 numbers rise
June 23, 2020

 During the month of June, Georgetown County has seen a dramatic increase in the number of COVID-19 cases reported. As of noon today, there are 190 active cases among those who reside in the county – more than were added during the combined months of March, April and May.

“COVID-19 is still a serious issue here and across the nation, and if people don’t take precautions to stop the spread, it will get worse before it gets better,” said Brandon Ellis, head of Georgetown County’s Emergency Management Department.

Read the full article

 

County announces plans for limited reopening
May 4, 2020

Georgetown County government facilities have been shuttered to the public for nearly two months in the wake of COVID-19. While staff has continued to work and provide services, most have done so from home or inside locked office buildings manned by skeleton crews.

This week, county officials are turning their sights to reopening.

“It’s going to be a gradual process for us,” said County Administrator Angela Christian. “We’re heading toward this with small steps, not big leaps. But I believe it is time for us to start moving in a forward direction. It looks like COVID-19 is going to be with us for a while, so we need to start figuring out what our new normal is going to look like and how we’re going to get there.”

Read the full article

 

County beach accesses to reopen May 1; short-term rental ban not extended
April 28, 2020

Georgetown County will reopen all its public beach accesses and adjacent parking lots at noon on Friday, May 1. County Council made this decision unanimously during its regular April 28 meeting, following a report by Georgetown County Sheriff Carter Weaver. The Sheriff's Office will continue its beach patrols.

Council did not address the short-term rental ban. The ban is currently set to expire at the end of this month, allowing short-term rentals to resume May 1 as well.

View the County Ordinance

Watch the full April 28 Council Meeting 

 

County beach accesses to remain closed
April 21, 2020

After a 30-minute emergency meeting on April 21, Georgetown County Council voted 5-2 to keep county beach accesses closed. The ordinance passed by Council calls to keep accesses closed until May 15 or until the ordinance is rescinded by Council. Council Member Ron Charlton asked that Council discuss the matter again in two weeks.

Council Members opposed to the measure were Raymond Newton and Steve Goggans. Council members who voted in favor were John Thomas, Lillie Jean Johnson, Ron Charlton, Louis Morant and Everett Carolina. In making their decision, council members cited concerns over safety, as well as concerns that with other counties and municipalities keeping their beaches closed, reopening now could lead to a large influx of visitors and an increase in the spread of coronavirus cases.

The Murrells Inlet Marshwalk and Jetty View Pier will also remain closed.

View the Ordinance

Watch the Meeting

 

Deputy Adjutant General visits GCEMD
April 16, 2020

Brigadier Gen. Jeffrey Jones, the Deputy Adjutant General for the S.C. Military Department, stopped by the Georgetown County Emergency Operations Center today to meet with Brandon Ellis, our Emergency Manager. Accompanied by his staff, Jones spoke with Ellis about how the county is faring during the COVID-19 emergency and pledged his support. "It's kind of like fighting a sloth right now," Ellis told him of the virus, which has had most residents staying at home as much as possible for the last 4 weeks. The two discussed contingency planning and Jones listened in on a conference call between counties and state officials. Georgetown County Emergency Management is currently beginning the planning process for gradually reopening facilities to the public, though it is uncertain exactly when reopening will occur. "That too is going to be a marathon, not a sprint," Ellis said.

Read the Full Article

 

"Home or Work" Order in place for State of S.C.
April 6, 2020

On Monday, April 6, S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster declared a statewide stay-at-home order. Beginning at 5 p.m. April 7, residents should remain home unless they are participating in "essential business" or "essential activities," such as reporting to work for essential jobs, buying groceries or seeking medical care. Some outdoor recreational activities are also allowed. Read the full order and more from the state at www.scemd.org.

 

Georgetown County limits short-term rentals
March 27, 2020

Georgetown County Council met in emergency session via phone this morning to enact a ban on short-term rentals during the COVID-19 crisis.

The ordinance adopted by council bans new short term rentals in all unincorporated areas of the county beginning at 12 a.m. March 28 and lasting until May 1. The action was one requested by many residents of the county over concerns about increased spread of Coronavirus resulting from an influx of visitors from other areas where the infection rate is much higher.

Read the full Article
View Ordinance

 

Council, CPST meetings to be conducted virtually
March 19, 2020

Due to the State of Emergency in Georgetown County surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic, Georgetown County Council’s March 24 meeting will be conducted virtually.  The county will use teleconferencing software to connect council members and staff for the 5:30 p.m. meeting, which will be live streamed from the County’s Facebook page (Facebook.com/GTCountySC). The meeting agenda and supplemental materials will be posted at gtcounty.org on Friday before the as usual, giving members of the public an opportunity to review items up for discussion.

Read the Full Article

 

Georgetown County to close its buildings to the public beginning Wednesday
March 17, 2020

Georgetown County government will temporarily close the majority of its facilities to the public beginning on Wednesday, March 18. County staff will still report to work to continue serving the public via phone and online. Closures will be in place for an indeterminate amount of time as the county is in a State of Emergency. The step is part of Georgetown County’s effort to protect residents and employees as jurisdictions across the nation deal with the worldwide threat of COVID-19, also known as Coronavirus. The highly contagious virus has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization and poses a significant threat to those in the county as it continues to spread. This threat led Georgetown County to declare a State of Emergency yesterday and close parks and recreation facilities.

Read the Full Article

 

Georgetown County to declare State of Emergency, close recreation facilities
March 16, 2020

Georgetown County government will declare a State of Emergency at 5 p.m. today as it works to protect residents and employees from the threat of COVID-19. The highly contagious virus has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization and poses a significant threat to those in the county as it continues to spread across the nation.

Along with the declaration, Georgetown County Emergency Management will elevate its readiness level to OPCON 2, which indicates enhanced awareness surrounding a situation that is likely to affect the county. Under OPCON 2, the county begins implementing emergency operations plans. The county’s Emergency Operations Center will not be activated due to the nature of the threat and in favor of social distancing. Key team members will instead work together remotely, and a virtual Joint Information Center will be activated beginning at 9 a.m. Tuesday, March 17.

Read the Full Article

View the Ordinance


All Summary Courts canceled until further notice
March 16, 2020, 9 a.m.

Per Georgetown County Chief Magistrate Isaac Pyatt, Summary Courts have cancelled all court sessions including today’s jury trials until further notice. Parties will be notified by mail of their rescheduled dates.  Those needing to make payments for any of the county’s magistrate offices may do so at the drop box location at Central Traffic Court, 333 Cleland Street.  No cash and no personal checks are accepted -- Money orders or cashier’s checks only. Please include a copy of the ticket or case number with payment. Payments may also be made online.


County continues to closely monitor COVID-19 spread
March 13, 2020

As Georgetown County government continues to monitor the spread of the COVID-19 virus in the State of South Carolina and beyond, it is taking precautionary measures internally to deal with potential impacts and encourages area businesses and households to do so as well.

Georgetown County’s Emergency Management Division is in close contact with local, regional and state partners to ensure appropriate coordination and communication remains ongoing. Local government does not have an arm specializing in health services, so the county is following the lead of state and national official agencies, including the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Read the Full Article

 

RECEIVE EMERGENCY ALERTS

Georgetown County residents and businesses are encouraged to sign up to receive emergency information (such as boil water notifications and other vital information for their area) through the CodeRED notification system. Choose to receive information via phone, text message or e-mail.

Sign up for emergency alerts

 

EMERGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION

Georgetown County Information Hotline (for the latest storm information):
(843) 545-3900, available 24 hours a day when the county's Emergency Operations Center is activated.

Georgetown County Emergency Management:
(843) 545-3273

S.C. Department of Transportation Information:
(888) 877-9151 Toll Free

Shelter Information:
(866) 246-0133 Toll Free

 

Radio:

Charleston - WIWF 96.9 FM
Charleston - WEZL 103.5 FM
Myrtle Beach - WYAV 104.1 FM
Myrtle Beach - WLFF 106.5 FM
Georgetown - WGTN 1400 AM

 

Useful Official Websites:

Other Online Resources:

The information provided in the following web sites may be useful, although not all of the listed sites are official government sites and may not be completely up-to-date or accurate.

UDERSTANDING HURRICANE WATCHES AND WARNINGS

TROPICAL STORM WATCH:

An announcement that tropical storm conditions with sustained winds of 39-73 mph are possible within the specified area within 48 hours.

TROPICAL STORM WARNING:

An announcement that tropical storm conditions with sustained winds of 39-73 mph are expected somewhere within the specified area within 36 hours.

HURRICANE WATCH:

An announcement that hurricane conditions with sustained winds of 74 mph or higher are possible within the specified area. Because hurricane preparedness activities become difficult once winds reach tropical storm force, the hurricane watch is issued 48 hours in advance of the anticipated onset of tropical storm force winds.

HURRICANE WARNING:

An announcement that hurricane conditions with sustained winds of 74 mph or higher are expected somewhere within the specified area. Because hurricane preparedness activities become difficult once winds reach tropical storm force, the hurricane warning is issued 36 hours in advance of the anticipated onset of tropical storm force winds.

COMMON TERMS:

  • EVACUATION - Is mandated by the Governor for requiring evacuation of everyone within a certain evacuation zone.
  • TROPICAL DEPRESSION - Is a tropical cyclone in which the maximum sustained surface wind speed is 38 mph or less.
  • TROPICAL STORM - Is a tropical cyclone in which the maximum sustained surface wind speed ranges from 39-73 mph.
  • HURRICANE - Is a tropical cyclone in which the maximum sustained surface wind speed is 74 mph or higher.
  • STORM SURGE - An abnormal rise in sea level accompanying a hurricane or other intense storm, and whose height is the difference between the observed level of the sea surface and the level that would have occurred in the absence of the cyclone. Storm surge is usually estimated by subtracting the normal or astronomic high tide from the observed storm tide.