Evacuation Re-Entry Pass System

Standard Operating Procedure

Incident Emergency Response and Re-Entry Pass System

Memorandum of Agreements with Neighboring Jurisdictions

City of Beaufort

County of Beaufort

Town of Bluffton

Town of Hilton Head

Town of Port Royal 

In the event of an enforced evacuation, the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with Beaufort County and the following municipalities to include the Town of Bluffton, Town of Port Royal, Town of Hilton Head Island and the City of Beaufort will be issuing re-entry passes to qualified individuals per Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office, Standard Operating Procedure 1.03 Incident Emergency Response and Re-Entry Pass System.

Incident Emergency Response passes and Incident Re-Entry passes will only be issued from January 1st thru April 30th of each year. After that time, no passes will be issued from any participating entity. Although, some extenuating circumstances may arise, under those exceptions, only the Sheriff of Beaufort County can authorize the issuance of passes outside of the stated time frame. Incident Emergency Response and Incident Re-Entry Passes are good for a term of two years. They will commence on January 1st and expire December 31st of the second year. EXAMPLE: January 1, 2018 till December 31, 2019. Upon expiration, it is the responsibility of the pass holder and/or agency to re-apply for new passes. Incident Emergency Response Passes for Elected Officials expire at the end of their term.

To apply for Incident Emergency Response or Incident Re-Entry passes, please submit the request on company letterhead, stating your name, agency and amount of passes requesting for each tier along with a brief description of who will be receiving those passes and their role in a disaster. Please note that Incident Response Passes may require more information.Below is a description for qualification of passes:

Incident Emergency Response Passes (Section II):

1.  Personnel who shelter in place:

a.  Public Service District critical personnel.

b.  Beaufort County or the surrounding Municipalities Public Works and Damage Assessment critical personnel.

c.  Beaufort Memorial and Hilton Head Hospital Emergency Room critical personnel.

d.  Emergency Support Function (ESFs) personnel and other support personnel who actively work within the Beaufort County Emergency Operations Center during activations. These personnel must have the proper training credentials as outlined in ‘Section II, Part F’ in order to receive their pass.

2.  Personnel who may or may not shelter in place:

a.  Premise, SLED licensed security agencies.

b.  Local Elected Officials for Beaufort County and/or the surrounding municipalities.


C.  Personnel who are not required to carry Incident Emergency               Response Passes must have the proper agency and/or law                 enforcement credentials. Although uniforms are not required, it          is highly recommended that every chance be made to wear the           appropriate uniform per their agency to the incident. This helps         alleviate any delays in entering Beaufort County.

  1.  Federal, State, County and Municipal Law Enforcement   Personnel;

  2.  Fire Personnel;

  3.  EMS Personnel;

  4.  DHEC Personnel;

  5.  Electric utility companies (SCE&G, Santee Cooper &   Palmetto Electric) whose critical personnel hold a key role   in the initial stabilization of utilities in Beaufort County.   EXAMPLE: De-energize downed powerlines etc.

Incident Re-Entry Passes (Section III):

E.  Utility Companies  

  1.  Utility Companies include energy providers (SCE&G,   Palmetto Electric Co-Op and Santee Cooper Co-Op),   Beaufort Jasper Water Sewer Authority and the various   Service Districts serving specific areas of Beaufort County.

  2.  Mutual Aid utility workers are not required to carry   Incident Emergency Re-Entry passes if they are in their   properly marked company vehicles, wearing the   appropriate uniform of their employer and carrying the   proper credentials of their employer.  Mutual Aid utility   workers will be allowed to enter Beaufort County under   the four Tiers based off the requirements as stated below   for each Tier.

Tier One Incident Re-Entry Passes - Public Safety (Section IV):

A.  Immediate re-establishment of initial public safety/critical                   personnel having key roles in life saving services and the                     restoration of critical services after a disaster to begin the initial         (quick view / “windshield”) damage assessment. All Tier One re-         entry pass holders are required to present and wear their Tier           One Incident Re-Entry Passes at all times during a disaster.                 Examples of issuance for Tier One access are stated below:

  1.  Governmental services critical personnel who will help   stabilize and execute immediate/emergency primary road   “First Push” efforts to include but not limited to Damage        Assessment, Engineering, Public Works and Recovery.

  2.  Critical personnel who play a key role in rescues and   immediate life safety conducted through agencies that are   under contract with Beaufort County and the surrounding     Municipalities. COPY OF CONTRACT REQUIRED.

  3.  Critical personnel needed to assess the integrity of   governmental facilities necessary for the re-establishment   of government services.

Tier Two Incident Re-Entry Passes – Essential Support Personnel (Section V):

A.  Continued re-establishment for essential personnel having key            roles in life support services after a disaster. All Tier Two re-              entry pass holders are required to present and wear their Tier            Two Incident Re-Entry Passes at all times during a disaster.                Examples of issuance for Tier Two access are stated below:

  1.  Utility companies (see description in Section, III Part E)   whose essential personnel play a role in helping re-   establish utilities to Beaufort County.

  2.  Debris Removal companies who are under contract with   Beaufort County, the surrounding Municipalities whose   essential personnel play a key role in clearing the   roadways. (COPY OF CONTRACT REQUIRED).

  3.  Essential personnel needed to restart basic governmental   services to include but not limited to codes enforcement,   public works, engineering, damage assessment and   recovery.

  4.  Essential personnel from Beaufort County Animal Services;

  5.  General Managers and Engineers of hardware stores who   are in support of emergency operations, for the initial   damage assessment of their facility and who have a valid   contract with the requesting jurisdiction (COPY CONTRACT   REQUIRED).

  6.  Essential personnel from qualified support groups or relief   workers from non-profit organizations to support the   response and recovery operations with food, water etc.

  7.  General Managers and Engineers of Organizations who   maintain their own infrastructure and who have their own   security (SLED Certified) force. Number of passes to be   issued will be the discretion of the Emergency Manager, of   the jurisdiction, to decide based on the request.

  8.  Organizations under contract supporting Beaufort County   and the municipality’s services during a disaster (COPY   CONTRACT REQUIRED).

Tier Three Incident Re-Entry Passes (Section VI):

A.  Support Personnel, approved through the Emergency                           Management Steering Committee, whose functions are deemed         an asset to Beaufort County during times of a disaster to assess         their facilities.  All Tier Three re-entry pass holders are required         to present and wear their Tier Three Incident Re-Entry Passes at       all times during a disaster. Examples of issuance for Tier Three         access are stated below:

  1.  General Manager and Engineers for Hotels.

  2.  General Managers and Engineers of Nursing Homes.

  3.  General Managers and Engineers of Rehabilitation   Centers/Medical Centers IF they are responsible for   evacuating their patients AND are responsible for bringing   them back (COPY OF PLAN REQUIRED).

  4.  General Managers of Grocery Stores
         a.  Grocery stores, who prove they have a generator on         site, as part of their infrastructure (generator must                 power up the entire store to include the cash registers)         can request additional Tier 3 re-entry passes. Number           of passes to be issued will be the discretion of the                 Emergency Manager, of the jurisdiction, to decide based       on the request.
         b.  Grocery stores who prove they have the connectivity         (infrastructure must be wired) for a generator                         (connectivity for the generator must power up the entire       store to include the cash registers) can request                       additional Tier 3 re-entry passes. Number of passes to         be issued will be the discretion of the Emergency                   Manager, of the jurisdiction, to decide based on the                 request.
         c.  Grocery stores who are requesting re-entry passes           under Section VI, Part A4 (a)(b) must submit proof in               writing to include photographic evidence. Requests are         subject to inspection by the Emergency Manager, of the          jurisdiction where requested.

  5.  General Managers of Pharmacies.

  6.  General Managers of Gas Stations.

  7.  Hardware Stores (who qualify under Section V, Part A5)   support personnel who are needed to make the store   functional. Discretion of the number of passes to be issued   will be left to the Emergency Managers, of the jurisdiction,   to decide based on the request.

  8.  Organizations, who qualify under Section V, Part A8,   contracted Debris Removal company’s essential personnel   who play a key role in clearing the roadways. (COPY OF   CONTRACT REQUIRED).

Tier Four Incident Re-Entry Passes (Section VII):

A.  Businesses

  1.  Businesses supporting the re-entry and transition to   recovery process. This can include, but not limited to:
         a.  Landscaping Companies.
         b.  Tree Trimming Companies.
         c.  Residential Construction Companies.
         d.  Grocery Stores and Pharmacies.
         e.  Gas Stations.
         f.   Hospice.
         g.  Medical Urgent Care Companies.

  2.  Businesses qualified under “Section VII, Part A1” shall be   eligible for Tier Four Incident Re-Entry after displaying a       current business license for the jurisdiction/municipality in   which they desire to enter. The current business license       must be produced at any Traffic Control Point or Security     Checkpoint within that jurisdiction or any neighboring           jurisdiction within the geographic confines of Beaufort           County in which they desire to transit.

            B.  Residents/Non-Resident Property Owners

                 Resident/Non-Resident Property Owners for Beaufort                           County may enter under Tier Four after displaying a                             current Property Tax Receipt for Beaufort County, or a                         current South Carolina Driver’s License displaying an                           address within the confines of Beaufort County.

General Public will be allowed in after all the above Tier Re-Entries have been completed

To apply for any of the above passes, please submit your request to the local jurisdiction where your agency/business operates. All listed below are in cooperation and operate under Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office Standard Operating Procedure 1.03 Incident Emergency Response and Re-Entry Pass System Memorandum of Agreement.

Unincorporated Areas of Beaufort County and others as stated above:

Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office
Attention Lieutenant Colonel Neil Baxley
2001 Duke Street
Beaufort SC 29902


Town of Bluffton:

Bluffton Police Department
Attention: Captain Scott Chandler
101 Progressive Street
Bluffton SC 29910


Town of Port Royal:

Port Royal Police Department
Attention: Captain John Griffith
1748 Paris Avenue
Port Royal SC 29935

Town of Hilton Head Island:

Hilton Head Fire & Rescue
Attention: Tom Dunn
40 Summit Drive
Hilton Head Island, SC 29926


City of Beaufort:

City of Beaufort Police Department
Attention: Captain Rob Carson
1911 Boundary Street
Beaufort SC 29902

Beaufort County Sheriff's Office

2001 Duke St

Beaufort, South Carolina 29902

Email: BCSOWebsite@bcgov.net 

Phone: 843-255-3200

© 2018 by Beaufort County Sheriff's Office