SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) – Gov. Nathan Deal orders mandatory evacuations along the entire Georgia coast as Hurricane Matthew approaches.
Deal says in a release Thursday everyone east of Interstate 95 should flee Georgia’s six coastal counties – Chatham, Bryan, Liberty, McIntosh, Glynn and Camden. Those counties have a combined population of more than 522,000 people.
The governor had asked coastal residents to evacuate on a voluntary basis Wednesday. He called for mandatory evacuations as the National Hurricane Center placed all 100 miles of coastal Georgia under a hurricane warning Thursday.
Officials say powerful winds and heavy rains from Matthew could begin to arrive in coastal Georgia late Thursday. The storm is forecast to pass Saturday.
Gov. Deal will hold a news conference at 2 p.m. today to provide weather and preparedness updates. Watch live here.
For Hurricane Matthew updates or more information on preparedness efforts, contact Catherine Howden at GEMHSA or visit www.gema.ga.gov.