“Our Regional Managers are participating in planning and coordination for a response to the flooding in South Carolina,” World Renew DRS Director Ron Willett said this morning. “However, until it’s safe and the water has subsided, search and rescue teams are regulating access to the affected areas.”
One to two feet of torrential rain fell on Columbia and the surrounding area over the weekend as Hurricane Joaquin trapped and funneled Gulf moisture up the East Coast. State officials are urging residents to stay home today after at least seven people were killed in the flooding on Sunday, most swept away in their vehicles by the raging water.
President Obama also declared a federal emergency over the weekend, releasing resources and personnel to respond. Hundreds of thousands of residents are without drinking water or electricity, and hundreds of roads and bridges are closed. More than a dozen emergency shelters have been opened in the affected areas for evacuated, displaced, and stranded residents.
“We expect that World Renew DRS regional managers for the East Coast will continue monitoring the progress of the storm and response with officials and other disaster organizations over the next few days,” Willett said. “It appears that more rain is expected to fall in the area through Wednesday.”
Much of the rest of the East Coast appears to have received less rain and more localized flooding, according to reports. Storm preparation efforts were in full swing last week along the portion of the eastern seaboard after Super-Storm Sandy devastated coastal communities in New York and New Jersey in 2012.
World Renew DRS is sending volunteers to Ocean County, New Jersey, on an ongoing basis to continue to help identify low-income, elderly, and disabled residents so that they receive the assistance they need to repair and rebuild their homes. Willett says that World Renew DRS expects to continue to assist homeowners in Ocean County in response to needs remaining from Super-Storm Sandy for the next two years.
“The complexity and length of the response needed for the flooding in South Carolina is yet to be determined,” Willett said, “but it’s already clear in these early days that the magnitude of the disaster and the resources needed to recover from it are significant.”
World Renew DRS is appealing for funds to launch a possible response to the flooding in South Carolina resulting from this storm flooding and other hurricanes that affect North America this fall.
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orr send your gifts marked “Hurricanes 2015" to:
World Renew US
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To contact World Renew DRS Director Ron Willett for an interview, call cell 616-295-2653, or contact Beth DeGraff at 800-552-7972, locally at 616-224-0786, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHOTO: Greg Rodermond (R) and Mandy Barnhill, use a canoe to evacuate Mandy's home on Long Avenue in Conway, South Carolina, October 5, 2015. Torrential rainfall that South Carolina's governor called a once-in-a-millennium downpour triggered flooding in the southeastern U.S. state on Sunday, causing at least eight deaths in the Carolinas. The storm had dumped more than 20 inches (50 cm) of rain in parts of central South Carolina since Friday, the National Weather Service said. The state climatologist forecast another 2 to 6 inches (5 to 15 cm) through Monday as the rain began to slacken. REUTERS/Randall Hill