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Hurricane Florence moving toward East Coast, could hit Maryland (Updated 9/11/18)

We’ll be keeping this page updated as new information comes in. 

9/11/18 Update: On Monday night, Governor Larry Hogan declared  a State of Emergency for Maryland.

“We are preparing for the potential of historic, catastrophic and life-threatening flooding in Maryland,” Hogan said.

Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina have also declared a State of Emergency. Florence is expected to hit the Carolinas and is likely to cause dangerous storm surge and flooding from South Carolina up to the coasts of the mid-Atlantic states. Florence has been upgraded to a Category 4 hurricane and could reach Category 5 status. The impact the storm will have on the state of Maryland is still unknown. 

Soon expected to reach Category 3 hurricane status, Tropical Storm Florence brought high winds of around 115 mph to the Atlantic coast of Bermuda on Thursday and is now heading west. The storm is expected to reach portions of the U.S. East Coast, according to the National Hurricane Center, and while the storm had weakened slightly this morning, it is expected to gain strength as it continues moving over the Atlantic.  

Said Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan, “We’re keeping an eye on it.”

According to the National Hurricane Center, it is now moving northwest toward Maryland at 12 mph. On Wednesday, Florence sustained winds of 130 mph, making it a Category 4 hurricane and the first major hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic season. You can track the storm here.

Beachgoers should be aware that swells generated by Florence are expected to reach portions of the East Coast this weekend, and could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. Should this be the case, please stay out of the water until further notice. 

There is no reason to panic or be alarmed; however, it’s always important to practice emergency preparedness and stay updated and aware of the situation. 

Ocean City Evacuation Phases

By Ocean City Director of Emergency Services Joseph Theobald

Phase # 1

Anyone traveling to Ocean City is asked to delay their visit until the situation improves.
Mobile Home Residents and Residents of known flood prone areas should prepare secure your homes and prepare to evacuate.
Secure or move all watercraft.
All persons are asked to tune into their Government Access Channel for further detailed information or advisories.

Phase # 2

All non-resident property owners, vacationers, and vistors are asked to evacuate.
All mobile home and low lying area residents are asked to evacuate.
The Mayor closes the beach.
City buses will be used for transportation to shelters.
The Route 50 Draw Bridge will be closed to boat traffic.
All persons are asked to tune into their Government Access Channel for further detailed information or advisories.

Phase # 3

The Mayor declares a local State of Emergency.
The sale of alcohol is banned and all businesses are asked to close immediately in Ocean City.
Everyone other than emergency personnel are asked to evacuate.
Incoming traffic is limited to emergency personnel.
The municipal bus service is providing pick up service on Coastal Highway for evacuation shelters.
All persons are asked to tune into their Government Access Channel for further detailed information or advisories.

Phase # 4

The Mayor requests a complete evacuation of Ocean City as quickly as possible.
All public services and public transportation will be shut down, and all incoming routes to Ocean City will be closed.
Remaining city personnel are ordered to seek shelter immediately and button down.
All persons are asked to tune into their Government Access Channel for further detailed information or advisories.

Ocean City Evacuation Routes

From 62nd Street area South: South on Coastal Highway over the U.S. Route 50 Bridge.
From the Delaware Line South: South on Coastal Highway over the Md. Route 90 Bridge.
From South of North Division Street: North on Baltimore avenue, Left on 1st. Street South on Philadelphia avenue, over the U.S. Route 50 Bridge.
From 2nd Street to 33rd Street area: One block West, South on Philadelphia Ave, over the U.S. Route 50 Bridge.

Stay updated

Radio Frequencies:
Ocean City Emergency Advisory Radio 99.5FM

Scanner Frequencies:
Ocean City Police Patrol North [460.325 MHz]
Ocean City Vol. Fire Co. Dispatch [158.895 MHz]
NOAA Radio Frequency – Salisbury [162.475 MHz]

Emergency Alerting System (EAS)
Worcester County WQHQ FM [104.7 MHz]
Worcester County WSCL FM [89.5 MHz]

Recorded Storm Updates
Call 410-723-6666

Flood Hazard Protection

Hurricane Tracking Map

Hurricane And Storm Tracking

NOAA Geostationary Satellite Browse Server

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  1. At this point, all bike week activities are a go. It is beautiful today – cloudy and breezy but not raining any more. There are lots of bikes in town already. It looks like a lot of fun to ride in this weather. It looks like the hurricane is hitting much farther south so it may just hit us as rainy weather, nothing more. It’s still too early to tell.

  2. We have reservations also. We was suppose to be there today(Monday). But I moved it up till Wednesday to watch the storm. I didn’t want to cancel all the way yet. Please can someone answer our questions? Should we cancel and is bike week getting canceled? I’d like to know cause I can reschedule our plans and hotel. Thank you


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