Biden approves emergency declaration as Ian bears down on South Carolina
President Biden late Thursday approved an emergency declaration for South Carolina as Hurricane Ian barreled toward the state with increasing strength.
Ian, which was briefly downgraded to a tropical storm after tearing through Florida on Wednesday, was upgraded to a hurricane once again on Thursday night.
It is expected to make landfall in South Carolina on Friday afternoon, with life-threatening storm surges along the Carolina coast and flooding rains up to southern Virginia, according to the National Hurricane Center. After landfall in South Carolina, Ian is expected to quickly weaken as it travels inland and into North Carolina.
Biden’s emergency declaration allows for the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Department of Homeland Security to coordinate disaster relief in the state.
Hurricane Ian devastated portions of Florida after it made landfall on Wednesday as a Category 4 hurricane. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) declined to provide a death toll at a press briefing on Thursday night but noted that they “absolutely expect to have mortality from this hurricane.”