OCEAN CITY, Md. (WJZ) — The shift in Hurricane Florence’s track means Maryland’s Atlantic coastline will get less of a punch from the massive storm.
Ocean City’s Mayor Rick Meehan said officials there are continuing to monitor Florence’s track, but they don’t expect much more than rain.
“Right now, it looks like we’re even out if the range of tropical storm force winds,” he said. “We always have to be on the watch. Safety is our number one priority.”
Emergency Services Director Joe Theobald said some areas—particularly on the Bay side—could see minor flooding.
“We can’t lose focus that this is the height of hurricane season,” Theobald said. “There are other storms out behind Florence. We’ll do our due diligence, keep our eye on everything, and keep our community safe.”
Officials said there could also be some minor flooding downtown. The impact will be felt Thursday night into Saturday. OC Bikefest is continuing, but events have been moved into the convention center.
Melissa Reynolds drove more than six hours to Ocean City after being evacuated from North Carolina.
“I’ve been through hurricanes. This is not something to mess with. Get out and stay safe,” she said.
Reynolds, from the Baltimore area, was on vacation in the Outer Banks.
“You would never know this monster storm is out there,” she said as she pointed toward the Atlantic Ocean.
On Wednesday, Ocean City was sunny and beaches were packed. Authorities have cautioned about rough seas and rip currents from the massive hurricane to the south.
“We’re praying for the safety of those in the Carolinas,” said beachgoer Sandy Smith.
Ocean City is reminding people not to drive through floodwaters and to secure loose patio furniture and garbage cans in the event of wind gusts.