Here's why Maryland is still under a state of emergency for Hurricane Florence

Gov. Larry Hogan kept Maryland under a state of emergency Thursday even as the full force of Hurricane Florence approached landfall on the coast of the Carolinas.

The governor maintained his declaration even as the storm appeared to follow a more southerly track than projections earlier in the week.

While the center of the storm appeared to take it away from Maryland’s Atlantic coast and the Chesapeake Bay, a projection by the National Weather Service showed Florence curling northward up the Appalachian Mountain range after it moves inland over North and South Carolina. If it follows that track, the storm could hit Maryland from the south and west early next week — with the strongest impact in the western counties.

Hogan declared the state of emergency Monday in an executive order.

Amelia Chasse, a spokesman for the governor, said that by declaring a state of emergency ahead of a storm of this size and potential impact, Maryland can more efficiently coordinate state and local resources and make preparations that require lead time, such as mobilizing the National Guard.

Chasse noted that both Virginia and the District of Columbia declared states of emergency, although the District lifted its order late Thursday afternoon.

As Carolinas bear down for Hurricane Florence, it looks as if Maryland will miss worst of storm »

Hogan’s declaration spells out that it allows Maryland to better coordinate its efforts with nearby states as part of a mutual aid compact.

“A state of emergency is a good indicator that residents should remain alert and follow officials’ orders, news stations and weather forecasts in order to be informed of the situation,” Russell Strickland, executive director of the Maryland Emergency Management Agency, said in a statement earlier this week.

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