The path of Hurricane Matthew, now north of Cuba, shifted slightly to the west Tuesday and then slightly east overnight. According to the National Hurricane Center, the severity of any impacts on Bryan County and Coastal Georgia will depend on what the storm does between now and Friday.
The NHC predicts the storm to arrive here Friday and continuing into Saturday. Coastal flooding, heavy sustained winds and rainfall of up to 12 inches are expected. There is up to about a 10 percent chance that Bryan County will experience hurricane-force winds (74 mph or greater) during this time.
Bryan County Emergency Services and other first responders in Bryan County will take part in a conference call with the Georgia Emergency Management Agency at 3 p.m. today. The Bryan County News will provide an update after that meeting. BCES also will post updates on its Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/BryanCountyEmergencyServices/.
Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency for Bryan County and 12 other counties in Georgia, but no evacuation orders are in place at this time. You can read the text of the governor’s executive order at http://www.bryancountynews.com/section/12/article/46386/. A state of emergency allows money to be spent on disaster preparation and relief if need be and gives the governor latitude in emergency response situations, such as travel restrictions, closing state offices and deploying the National Guard. A similar declaration was issued in September ahead of Hurricane Hermine.
For more information on disaster preparation, please see www.ready.ga.gov.