Oct 12 2015

Monday Flood Update

The rain may have ended, but the flood risk remains. In this blog, discover just how this historic flooding began.

On October 1 the rain started. This wasn’t just a little rain, either. It was more like a Noah-Get-Your-Ark type of rain. It then lasted for five days and measured in some areas at more than 20 inches. This rain, coupled with the exceptionally high tides during the same period, meant that flooding was not only imminent, but guaranteed.

Due to the flood water, numerous streets were closed in the town of Edisto Beach and the causeway on the island was also closed. Luckily, with the help from local rescue personnel and friendly neighbors, those displaced by the water were able to get to safety.

Now that the flooding is over on a local level, there is still potential for additional flooding to happen as river water from upstate makes it way down to the coast.

According to South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, low-lying coastal areas will experience more flooding from the state’s rivers. It is thought that for Edisto, the marsh will absorb the majority of this floodwater, but with the natural water tables already higher than normal, flooding could still pose a threat.

For instance, the Edisto River is currently six feet above flood stage. Many individuals in Colleton County were evacuated as the river overflowed its banks. As of Today Oct. 12, most roads to the river from Highway 61, Pierce Road and McDanieltown Road are impassable due to the flooding. A flood warning has been issued until 1:45 p.m today. 

The river is expected to reach a record-breaking level of 17 feet over the flooding stage by Sunday, which means many individuals will need to get to higher ground. The National Guard and Charleston County deputies are currently monitoring the area. Those displaced by the flood can take shelter at C.C. Blaney Elementary School located at 7184 Highway 162 in Colleton County.

It is important to realize at this time and until the flood threat ends that if authorities urge residents to evacuate that you do leave the premises. You should also make arrangements for any pets or livestock that could be in danger from the flood.

If you would like to help those impacted by the flood, you can donate to the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army (designate East Coast Floods on your check), text STORM to 51555, make donations via check to the South Carolina Baptist Convention PO Box 212999, Columbia, SC 29221 and write Flood Disaster Relief in the memo. You can also donate to the Humane Society of the United States – South Carolina chapter to help animals impacted by the storm.

As for Edisto Beach itself, if you are in the area for any reason you may want to avoid swimming due to possible contamination and dangerous conditions brought on by the flooding. Many times rain water and flooded areas sweep debris and bacteria into the water, so it is important to be mindful of this fact and be cautious. You should also be cautious while boating. Remember if you see anyone or anything that looks like it is in distress to call local authorities.

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