Nathan Deal, the governor of Georgia, has ordered a mandatory evacuation starting on Saturday. The evacuation covers the state's Atlantic coast as Hurricane Irma bears down.
The evacuation includes all areas east of Interstate 95, all of Chatham County, and some areas west of the interstate reports AP. An additional thirty counties are also under a state of emergency.
In order to deal with the possible destruction, the governor asked all of the state's National Guard members to be on active duty. This prepares the Guard to help more effectively if the hurricane hits.
If Irma does actually pass through the state, it would be the first time since a violent storm tore through the state in over a century. AP notes that Georgia has not been hit by a Category 3 hurricane or higher since 1898.
Georgia isn't the only state preparing for impact. Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina are all on high alert.
"The enormous storm could create one of the largest mass evacuations in U.S. history," reported CNN.
Florida is currently expecting the most damage. Governor Rick Scott declared a State of Emergency, and now four counties have issued evacuations notices. Broward County, Miami-Dade County, Monroe County, and Collier County are among the counties with mandatory or voluntary evacuations. More than 31,000 people have already been evacuated from the Florida Keys.
Both South Carolina and North Carolina are under a State of Emergency. They also asked their residences to look at evacuation routes, so that they can be ready to move at a moment's notice.
The Category 5 hurricane—the strongest Atlantic storm on record—is already wreaking havoc in the Caribbean, and it's expected hit Florida early Sunday. Read more about the devastation Hurricane Irma is causing in the Caribbean, and don't forget to pray for these tiny islands as they deal with the fallout.