Horry County council looking to build a new Emergency Operations Center in Aynor


HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Horry County council talked Tuesday about building a new Emergency Operations Center in the Aynor area.

County Chairman Mark Lazarus says the current EOC is not big enough to handle extra staff that is sometimes needed for extreme emergencies such as Hurricane Matthew.

“One of the problems we had during Hurricane Matthew was we had nowhere to put our people. We had people sleeping in the hallways and that’s just not a good situation,” said Lazarus.

Plus, the current EOC is located inside the potential storm surge area. The new EOC would not be.

“If you talk about relocating an EOC, you want to get out of the zone. We talked about the zones today. We would be out of the zone, we would be out of the area, it would be easier access for personnel that comes into town for us to be able to put them up,” said Lazarus.

He says the new EOC will likely be easily accessible from Highway 22.

Randy Webster, head of the Emergency Management Department, says a new EOC would be vital to the safety of Horry County citizens.

“It keeps everything running efficiently and effective and makes sure we get the disaster to stop as quick as possible- stabilized, and start the recover process to get our economic engine back running again and get jobs back up again, and people back in their homes as soon as possible,” said Webster.

Lazarus says the new EOC will be part of a new community center that will also be complete with recreational fields such as a ball park or a possible shooting range.

He says the council will likely begin to purchase land for the building within the next six months, and could complete the development of the EOC and community center by the end of two years.

Copyright 2017 WMBF News. All rights reserved.