SC officials: Pee Dee should brace now for more flooding

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Residents in the Pee Dee should begin preparing now for a second wave of flooding, the S.C. Emergency Management Division warned Wednesday.

The Waccamaw, Lynches, Little Pee Dee and Big Pee Dee rivers are all forecast to crest this weekend and into early next week.

“Rivers are still rising and will continue to rise for a majority of the week,” SCEMD said in a press release.

A task was sent to the Hartsville area in Darlington County to assist with search and rescue operations, if needed. And other teams remain on standby ready to respond, said SCEMD spokesman Derrec Becker.

Darlington County Fire District Chief Ricky Flowers said task force was sent as a precaution due to record flooding along Black Creek.

The creek crested at 17.37 feet late Monday night near Quinby, surpassing a record 16.8 feet. Flood stage is 10 feet. The creek was at 15.8 feet Monday morning, and was expect to rise slightly by Friday morning, and remain above flood stage into Monday, according to the National Weather Service.

“We had two dams that were pretty much at their capacity, and we wanted to be prepared for a worst-case scenario,” Flowers said, adding some hundred homes or more downstream would have been affected. “We are in much better condition (today) than we were a couple of days ago. And there may be a demobilization of the task force this evening, maybe tomorrow morning.”

All together, he said the fire department rescued 11 people over the weekend.

The State Fire reports teams assisted with 518 evacuations due to flooding from Florence.

Other updates Wednesday from SCEMD:

  • A large-animal rescue team has been staged in Marion County and two small-animal rescue teams have been staged in Florence
  • The agency has a three-day supply of food and water for 30,000 people at a distribution site in Florence, and a separate supply for 3,000 people in Conway and Myrtle Beach. And can call on FEMA, which has also moved food and water to Florence
  • The National Guard has 2,581 personnel deployed across the state to aid in rescue and recovery efforts
  • About 800 SC electric customers mainly in the Pee Dee region are without power
  • 12 emergency shelters are open across the state, including two special medical needs shelters, and addition shelters on standby
  • Those interested in volunteering should go to to regisgter.

SCEMD says residents in the Pee Dee should be prepared to leave their homes and use the damage assessment tool in the agency’s mobile app to report damage.

Residents should also avoid flooded roadways and never move or drive around barricades, Becker said. Flood water, too, pose various risks, including injury from floating and submerged debris and structures, chemical hazards and infectious diseases.