The situation in the upstate

by | September 21, 2018 11:31 am

Last Updated: September 21, 2018 at 12:23 pm

The South Carolina Emergency Response Team is monitoring and preparing for the water levels of rivers to rise. The forecast is for the Waccamaw, Lynches, Little Pee Dee and Big Pee Dee rivers to crest east of I-95 this weekend and into early next week.

Residents should continue to monitor local media and official, verified social media accounts from public safety agencies for the latest information on the South Carolina Emergency Management Division’s website at scemd.org.

Residents should consider the following:

· People should avoid flooded roads and never move or drive around barricades.
· Residents should be prepared to leave their homes if told to do so by local public safety officials.
· For information on road closures and detours, visit scdot.org or call 511.
· Flood waters and standing waters pose various risks, including injury, infectious diseases, chemical hazards and should be avoided.
· Extreme heat and humidity can be dangerous. If you’re in the heat and beginning the cleanup process, make sure to stay hydrated.
· Residents who have experienced damage can assist state and local agencies in the statewide damage assessment process by using the damage assessment tool in the SC Emergency Manager mobile application.
· If you aren’t impacted by Florence, consider donating. A financial contribution to a recognized disaster relief organization is the most effective donation to make
· Anyone interested in volunteering can go to volunteersc.org to register.

As of 10:00 A.M., Friday, the Response Team has reported:

· Florence County has issued a mandatory evacuation of Zone 1, which has approximately 400 homes and 1400 people in that area.
· Rivers are still rising and will continue to rise, some until early next week.
· The confluence of the Pee Dee and Little Pee Dee rivers may reach flood levels greater than Hurricane Matthew. Please use extreme caution in this area.
· The number of storm-related fatalities across the state is currently nine.
· I-95 is closed in several locations.
· SC-22 is closed in both directions between SC-905 to SC-90.
· U.S. 501 is currently open in a limited capacity.
· There are search and rescue teams as well as animal rescue teams staged in several counties ready to assist, as needed.
· The South Carolina Department of Transportation has reported 175 road closures around the state, 31 of which are primary roads.
· There are approximately 800 power outages across the state.
· There are 15 general population shelters open, including four additional shelters that opened in Florence this morning. Officials have additional shelters on standby, ready to open if needed.
· The Department of Health and Environmental Control is continuing to monitor dams, water treatment and wastewater treatment plants.
· The Public Information Phone System has answered over 12,500 calls.

The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) continues to be fully operational, staffed by emergency personnel from multiple state agencies and emergency organizations. The SEOC will be operational 24 hours a day until further notice.

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