Myrtle Beach is located mostly on a barrier island between the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway on the west and the Atlantic Ocean on the East. To the east of the waterway, the land is on a sandbar or dune area. West of the waterway, the land is mostly pine forest with a normal high water table, where developers create elevated areas to build on.
Myrtle Beach has a subtropical climate. This means that the city has mild winters and a hot, humid summer with much rainfall. Storms usually leave quickly, unless it is a hurricane or tropical storm. Myrtle Beach is touched or hit about every 3 years by a hurricane.
Hurricanes are large storms that develop over the ocean, spinning in a circle and moving across the water. Some hurricanes stay out over the ocean, but others come onto the land, and when it makes landfall, it has very strong winds, rain, and flooding. It can also bring tornadoes with it in its outer bands, and even places far inland can feel the impact of the storm. There are things that you can do, however, that will protect both you and your home from the storm.
- Keep hurricane supplies at the ready. Non-perishable food, batteries, flashlights, and a radio are good basic things to keep in your storm kit.
Listen to the radio and keep abreast of the weather. If you are told to evacuate, do so immediately.
If you are unable to leave before the hurricane comes, stay inside your home.
When you are in the house, stay away from windows and glass doors. Cover your windows and doors in some way; preparing your home before a storm hits is very important, and hurricane shutters are recommended. This will keep the glass from breaking, or will protect you if the glass does break from the wind.
Some common kinds of hurricane shutters:
- Bahama Shutters – louvered shutters that let in light and air, and close easily and quickly.
Colonial Shutters – Southern style shutters that come in two parts and go very well with the type of home found often in the South.
Accordion Shutters – shutters that unfold accordion style and are stored folded beside the window casing when not in use.
Roll-down or Rolling Shutters – convenient shutters that roll down with a touch of a button, and also have a manual option. Very unobtrusive and can match any home.
Hurricanes are very much a danger in Myrtle Beach, but with a few basic preparations, your home can be made much safer. Keep hurricane supplies ready, stay informed about the weather, evacuate when warned to, and cover your windows with hurricane shutters. This hurricane readiness can keep you, your family, and your home safe from the storm.