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We all know the drill – Water, bread, batteries

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Residents prep for Hurricane Florence

by Kayla Vaughn and Emily Pollok/reporters
Water, bread, milk, beans, batteries and other essentials needed to ride-out a heavy storm were flying off of shelves at local stores Tuesday afternoon as consumers prepped for Hurricane Florence.
Nikki Brinkman had her Walmart buggy loaded down with candles, non-perishables, charcoal, paper products and gallons of sweet tea. She said she bought extras of everything to get ready for the storm.
“I think everyone is underestimating what it will do,” she said, noting that she remembers when Hurricane Hugo came through nearly 30 years ago.
“The only difference in these two storms is that Hugo moved so much faster,” she said. “I was living all the way in Asheville, N.C., when it hit and we were still affected by it.”
Brinkman said her husband was off to find a generator for their home, but just in case he couldn’t find one or the generator quit working, she made sure their home was fully stocked for a power outage.
Steven Strong was shopping at Bi-Lo on the Lancaster bypass with his daughter, stocking up on cases of water. He, too, harkened back to Hugo.
“Two weeks without water and electricity. It was tough,” Strong said.
With Florence taking aim at the Carolinas, he said he’s not taking any chances.
“It’s always a hit and miss,” he said. “It’s better to be prepared than to not be prepared, so I can’t say anybody is overreacting. If it hits – and it hits hard – and you’re overeacting and you prepared, you’re prepared. If you don’t, you’re going to be looking for other people for help.
“I’m just trying to make sure I’m prepared – just not overly prepared,” he jested.
Antoinette Hemphill was buying food and water at Walmart for herself, her daughter and the five children they look after.
“We plan on stocking up as much as we can,” Hemphill said.
She was able to get most of what her family needed, although she couldn’t find any bread at the supercenter by the time she got there Tuesday afternoon.
The family’s plan for the next few days is to play games, watch movies and just ride out the storm.
“I’m a little bit concerned, but God’s got our backs,” Hemphill said.
Cars started lining up at the pumps at local gas stations late Tuesday afternoon. Some stores, like Jack’s on S.C. 9, have set a limit on how much gas customers can get, just to keep from running out.
Most clerks interviewed said the pumps haven’t been too busy today, but they are expecting a large wave of customers Wednesday.


Mark Manicone contributed to this article.