One Week Later: S.C. continues response to flooding, damage assessments

One Week Later: S.C. continues response to flooding, damage assessments

COLUMBIA, SC (WCSC) - The State Emergency Operations Center is continuing around-the-clock monitoring of the flooding situation that began one week ago, coordinating resources to get flood victims back on their feet.

The National Weather Service showed Sunday South Carolina rivers have now crested at their river gauges.

Since Sunday, more than 1,460 people were rescued from flood waters, 769,270 meals served to survivors and 4,100 state and National Guardsmen deployed.

"South Carolina is looking at a lengthy recovery process," Kim Stenson, director of South Carolina Emergency Management Division, said.  "With the help of our local, state and federal partners, and the goodwill of volunteers and of private and corporate donors, we are making it through these difficult times."

DHEC offers free well water checks, tetanus shots

Those who have flooded private wells can have them tested for fecal coliform bacteria by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control to be sure the water is safe to drink.

DHEC's private well water testing offices are open in the following cities and counties:  Florence, Charleston, Aiken, Myrtle Beach, Orangeburg, Sumter and Greenwood.

DHEC is providing tetanus vaccinations through health departments and three mobile clinics at the Lexington County Library Irmo Branch in Columbia, Bloomingdale Community Center in Andrews and Williamsburg County Department of Social Services in Kingstree.

The clinics will be in Florence and Georgetown counties next week.

SCDOT continues to monitor, repair roadways

As of Sunday afternoon, I-95 remained closed from Exit 119 to Exit 135 as crews worked to guarantee the safety of bridges in that stretch of the interstate.

However, I-95 is open to local southbound traffic only from I-26 in Orangeburg to Exit 119 and open to local northbound traffic only from Exit 135 to I-20 in Florence.

Officials said 225 SCDOT roads are closed and 103 SCDOT bridges are closed.

Highway Patrol tracking collisions, fatalities

The South Carolina Highway Patrol reported Sunday it received a total of 7,442 calls for service since Oct. 4.

It also investigated 2,905 collisions, of which eight involved fatalities.

State operating 15 shelters

The state's Department of Health and Human Services reported 15 shelters were open Sunday with 374 occupants.

Officials say the number of shelters and occupants fluctuates from day to day as conditions have improved in some areas and worsened in others.

Approximately 1.2 million liters of water have been distributed across 10 distribution points in areas where boil water advisories have been in effect.

State insurance director issues emergency order

The South Carolina Director of Insurance Ray Farmer issued an emergency order prohibiting insurance companies from canceling policies between Oct. 8 and Nov. 1, 2015, for insureds in all counties listed in the federal disaster declaration.

The emergency regulation also prohibits insurers from canceling or non-renewing policies solely because of claims resulting from the flooding event.

Human Service Organizations help victims recover

Harvest of Hope, Low Country Food Bank, the Salvation Army and the American Red Cross have been preparing hot meals for people affected by the flooding.

Southern Baptist Relief, providing debris removal, is asking for donations of five-gallon "flood" buckets with cleaning supplies.

The United Way is coordinating with multiple agencies to help respond to unmet needs for victims. Anyone who needs help should call the United Way's hotline, 211.

Those who want to volunteer or donate resources should call (888) 585-9643.

SCEMD officials say the Public Information Phone System (PIPS) call center has taken more than 11,700 calls from the public since Oct. 5.  Anyone with questions can call PIPS at (866) 246-0133.

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