South Carolina agencies prepare for Total Solar Eclipse


Emergency managers from several state agencies including the Department of Natural Resources, DHEC, DOT, SC Highway patrol and SC National Guard gathered at the South Carolina Emergency Operations Center to discuss plans for the upcoming solar eclipse.

Organizers say it appeared that there were more media outlets on hand for this event than Hurricane Matthew. ABC15 News was the only news outlet from the Grand Strand and Pee Dee in attendance.

"South Carolina is prepared," said S.C. Adjutant General Robert Livingston.

Emergency officials are planning on anywhere from 500,000 to 2 million people traveling in the state on August 21, the day of the eclipse. While they aren't expecting a major emergency, they are planning for traffic congestion and delays.

They say you should too, if you're planning on visiting. Shortcuts and back roads will only get you so far.

"Those shortcuts lead to main roads. No matter where you drive, you're going to see some traffic. You will have to expect traffic on that date. So, if you want to go, get your normal errands run, try to do that a few days before," said Sgt. Bob Beres with the S.C. Highway patrol.

Beres stresses that you shouldn't drive with your special eclipse glasses on, and waterways and boat launches could be just as congested as the roads.

"We want boaters to anchor for the eclipse and make sure their lights are on even though they're not required," said Capt. Ken Simmons with SCDNR.

Emergency managers say you should expect everything to be above capacity for nearly a week.

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