York, Chester Co. Hotels Near Capacity as People Evacuate Coast
ROCK HILL, SC – Nearly all hotel rooms are booked in York and Chester Counties in South Carolina through Tuesday, as people evacuate the coast.
“Very hard to find a room. Very hard,” explains North Myrtle Beach, SC resident Raymond Labunda.
He called 10 hotels before landing a room in Rock Hill.
“We got the last one here for tonight. And that was it. Everywhere we called, they were full, they were booked up,” he says.
People who left the coast say they packed as much as they could and got on the road.
Hotel parking lots were full of cars from Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas.
“Fine on 95. Route 26 is where it really started to slow down,” explains Ohio resident Gary Parks.
He cut his vacation on the Carolina coast short.
“We wanted to get a start on it. As opposed to waiting for the Governor’s edict to get out,” Parks says.
Lots of people were also stopping at rest areas like one on I-77 North near Chester.
Local emergency management officials expect more people to come through the area over the next couple of days.
“We haven’t had a threat like this in a long, long time. And so it’s still a fluid situation,” explains York County Emergency Management Director Chuck Haynes.
They’re working with local organizations to help evacuees find shelters if they can’t find anywhere else to stay.
“Even though the models are a tool, they’re not an absolute answer. So we have to play it safe,” Haynes says.