Mislabeled cases snarl election’s start; most now fixed
by The Press and Standard | November 6, 2018 11:51 am
Colleton County Voter Registration and Election Director Angela Upchurch realized something was wrong even before the polling places started opening.
She received a call from a polling precinct where the workers found the electronic voting machines were not working correctly.
One call became many.
Turns out, the seasonal workers who handled the packing of the containers that contained the Personal Electronic Devices (PEDs) — the small rectangular boxes the precinct workers use to call up the ballot on the electronic voting machines — had mislabeled all the containers.
The Bells precinct had the PEDs from the Islandton precinct. Every one of the county’s 32 polling places had the wrong PEDs.
The early voters at Bells and every other precinct in the county began receiving paper ballots, while the roaming technicians and office staff fanned out in the county to get the proper PEDs to the right precincts.
Some early voters, faced with a backup of the lines, went on their way without casting a ballot. Others reported that the lighting in some of the precincts was not conducive to reading a paper ballot.
At 11 a.m., Upchurch said she believed that almost all of the precincts had their electronic voting machines back up and running.