Events

CAPS 2018 Clay Shoot

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CAPS 2018 Clay ShootA big shout out to all the shooting enthusiasts that participated in an afternoon clay shoot followed by cocktails and awards sponsored by Custom Air Products & Services, Inc. (CAPS).

 

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Monday – Florence Update: Carolinas Flooding Intensifies

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Overflowing rivers threaten to swamp communities near the South Carolina coast, leaving thousands needing to evacuate.

Florence - updated Monday 2018-09-24More than a week after Florence crashed into the Carolinas, dumping heavy rains, that water is nearing the coast. Authorities in Georgetown County, South Carolina, said they have put as many as 8,000 people on alert for possible evacuations starting Monday in expectation of a “record event” of up to 10 foot floodwaters this week.

Officials are eyeing gauges along the Pee Dee and Waccamaw Rivers and said people should be ready to leave homes in the potential flood zones before possibly life-threatening flooding occurs as early as Tuesday.

Shelters are being opened Monday for area residents and officials are asking people to alert neighbors and friends to the possible dangers ahead. The community was also distributing free sandbags but said Monday was likely to be the last day to rush preparations before they should evacuate.

“From boots on the ground to technology that we have, we are trying to be able to get the message out,” Hodge said in the video feed, advising people not to await an official evacuation order should they feel unsafe.

Residents in areas that aren’t expected to flood were also being urged to evacuate since roads may be cut off, according to a statement by Georgetown County spokesperson Jackie Broach cited by CBS Charleston, S.C. affiliate WCSC-TV.

In North Carolina, five river gauges were still at “major flood” stage and five others were at moderate flood stage, according to National Weather Service. The Cape Fear River was expected to crest and remain at this flood stage through the early part of the week, and parts of Interstates 40 are expected to remain underwater for another week or more.

Parts of Interstate 95 are also expected to be underwater for days, but North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper announced Sunday night that the major highway (Interstate 40) has been reopened to all traffic, as those floodwaters had withdrawn faster than expected.

But floodwaters already receding on one stretch of Interstate 40 left thousands of rotting fish on the pavement for firefighters to clean up.

North Carolina Emergency Management Director Michael Sprayberry said eastern counties continue to see major flooding, including areas along the Black, Lumber, Neuse, and Cape Fear rivers.

Elsewhere in North Carolina, state environmental officials also said they’re closely monitoring two sites where Florence’s floodwaters have inundated coal ash sites.

Crews conducted about 350 rescues over the weekend and travel remains treacherous in the southeastern area of his state. National Guard members will be conducting door-to-door and air search wellness checks on people in still-flooded areas.

An economic research firm estimated that Florence has caused around $44 billion in damage and lost output, which would make it one of the top 10 most expensive U.S. hurricanes. The top disaster, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, cost $192.2 billion in today’s dollars, while last year’s Hurricane Harvey cost $133.5 billion. Moody’s Analytics estimates Florence has caused $40 billion in damage and $4 billion in lost economic output, though the company stressed that the estimate is preliminary.

Congress is considering nearly $1.7 billion to aid recovery efforts from Florence. Lawmakers are already facing a deadline this week to fund the government before the start of the new budget year starting October 1st and members of Congress are expected to try to act on the disaster relief along with separate legislation to fund the government.

• North Carolina woman arrested for sheltering 27 dogs, cats abandoned during Florence.

• Less than 340,000 have flood insurance in North and South Carolina combined.

Source: CBS and National Weather Service
 

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Sunday – Tropical Storm Kirk approaches

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As flooding from Florence continues, a new threat arises in the Atlantic.

Kirk - updated Sunday 2018-09-23In a Sunday morning update, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Tropical Storm Kirk was 465 miles south-southwest of the Cabo Verde Islands, moving west at 18 mph with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.

There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.

The NHC said it is currently monitoring two other areas of disturbed weather in the Atlantic. One is located about 200 miles south-southwest of Bermuda and has a 40 percent chance of developing into a cyclone. The other – located about 1,000 miles north-northwest of the Azores – has a 70 percent chance of formation.

There is also a tropical depression located about 415 miles east-northeast of the Windward Islands.

The Atlantic hurricane season lasts until Nov. 30.

For more information on how you can storm-proof your HVAC system, please contact Custom Air Products & Services, Inc. before it is too late.

Source: National Hurricane Center (NHC)
 

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Saturday – Florence Update: Carolinas Face More Flooding

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Florence - updated Saturday 2018-09-22After a week of flash floods, rising rivers, power outages, and now over 44 deaths, North and South Carolina face high chances of more flooding over the weekend.

While the rain subsided, some rivers are still rising. Officials warn the danger is far from over.

• The Cape Fear River and Lumber River will both crest again this weekend.

• New areas are flooding with little warning. Travel is not recommended south of US 64.

• Many roads that are no longer flooded are still not safe, due to damage and debris from the storm.

• Trillions of gallons of water are slowly moving toward the ocean, leaving a wake of destruction.

• Residents were warned that the confluence of the Big Pee Dee and Little Pee Dee Rivers could reach levels greater than experienced during Hurricane Matthew.

Source: CNN
 

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Friday – Florence Update: NC Restoration Work Continues

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Florence - updated Friday 2018-09-21North Carolina’s electric cooperatives are continuing to make electricity outage restoration progress in the wake of Hurricane Florence.

Outages statewide have now dropped to about 23,000, down from a high of 326,000 on Saturday.

Outages & restoration

Remaining outages are concentrated in the hardest-hit areas of coastal and southeastern North Carolina.

Cooperative crews from less-impacted regions are joining local, out-of-state and contract crews in more heavily damaged communities to help restore power as quickly as possible. In areas where restoration points are inaccessible due to flooding or damaged roadways, or where damage to power poles and power lines is severe, the restoration effort may last several more days.

North Carolina’s electric cooperatives are continuing to make electricity outage restoration progress in the wake of Hurricane Florence. Cooperative outages statewide have now dropped to about 23,000, down from a high of 326,000 on Saturday.

Outages and restoration:
Remaining outages are concentrated in the hardest-hit areas of coastal and southeastern North Carolina.

Cooperative crews from less-impacted regions are joining local, out-of-state and contract crews in more heavily damaged communities to help restore power as quickly as possible. In areas where restoration points are inaccessible due to flooding or damaged roadways, or where damage to power poles and power lines is severe, the restoration effort may last several more days.

Gratitude

We thank cooperative members for their patience and many kind words as crews and co-op staff have worked tirelessly and diligently to rebuild after the storm and historic flooding. Restoring power quickly and safely is the electric cooperatives’ priority. We will continue working to bring the lights back on for all members.

Safety

• If your home was flooded, and water reached the electric meter, electric service cannot be restored until inspections are done and approvals are granted. Energizing structures that have been compromised by flood waters that reached the member’s electric meter can result in house fires as well as serious personal injury or death.
• Help keep our crews safe. If you see utility crews working on the side of the road, slow down and drive carefully.
• Never wade into or drive through flood water.
• Only use generators and charcoal grills in well-ventilated outdoor areas; a garage does not count as an area with adequate ventilation.
• Never connect a generator directly to a home’s wiring. Instead, use an extension cord to plug lights and appliances into the generator.
• Never touch a downed power line, and remember that sometimes debris can cover fallen lines, making them difficult to spot.

 

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Thursday – Florence Update: Carolinas expect more flooding

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Florence - updated Thursday 2018-09-20 6:30amWater has receded in some areas of the Carolinas, but more flooding from Florence could arrive through the next few days.

More than twelve rivers in North and South Carolina have overflowed their banks and the water – particularly the Waccamaw River, which spans both states – is expected to overflow, putting additional residents in danger. Officers have been going door-to-door along the river in Brunswick County, North Carolina encouraging residents to evacuate.

Summary and outlook

• Flooding expected to worsen in next few days.
• At least 36 killed so far.
• More than 115,000 still without power.

Florence dropped more than 35 inches of rain in parts of North Carolina, and many areas remained cut off by floodwaters and inundated roads. The storm, which made landfall on Friday as a Category 1 hurricane, has since been downgraded to a tropical depression and moved into the northeast.

The deaths of at least 36 people have been attributed to the storm, including 27 in North Carolina, eight in South Carolina, and one in Virginia. The latest victims were two women in South Carolina who drowned on Tuesday when a sheriff’s department van in which they were riding was swept away by flooding.

Some 2,600 people had been rescued by boat or helicopter in North Carolina alone since the storm hit land, according to the state Department of Public Safety. About 10,000 remained in shelters, the department said. More than 115,000 customers were without power across North Carolina, according to Poweroutage.us early on Thursday. As floodwaters continue to rise concerns are growing over the environmental and health dangers lurking in the water. The flooding has caused 21 hog “lagoons,” which store manure from pig farms, to overflow, creating a risk the standing water will be contaminated with bacteria like salmonella, according to the state’s Department of Environmental Quality. North Carolina is one of the leading hog-producing States in the country.

Several sewer systems in the region have also released untreated or partly treated sewage and storm water into waterways over the last week, local media reported.

Commentary from political leaders

President Trump met with first responders in Conway, South Carolina on Wednesday and warned them of the danger of rising rivers.

“It’s going to get rough for South Carolina,” he told them. “You’re going to have a rebuilding process, and we are behind you from day one,” Trump said, calling this the “calm before the storm, because you’re going to have a lot of water.”

Conway’s city spokesman Taylor Newell said water could be “4 feet higher” there than when Hurricane Matthew struck in 2016.

In North Carolina, Gov. Roy Cooper warned residents to “stay alert” as water rises.

“People in flood prone areas or near waterways need to remain alert as rivers crest and stay above their banks in coming days,” Cooper said.

Sources: ABC, CNN, and Reuters
 

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Wednesday – Florence Update: NC Gov pleads “Do not return home yet”

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Florence - updated Wednesday 2018-09-19 7:30amNorth Carolina’s governor is pleading with thousands of Hurricane Florence evacuees to be patient and not return home just yet.

Wilmington is still mostly an island surrounded by floodwaters, and people are waiting for hours for handouts of necessities like food.

Gov. Roy Cooper told a news conference Tuesday is was hard for residents to leave home, and it’s even harder for them to wait to go back. But Cooper says many roads are dangerous and new hazards are possible as floodwaters fall.

Officials say about 10,000 people are in shelters, and a new one is opening in one hard-hit county.

Aides say President Donald Trump will visit North Carolina on Wednesday to see the damage. He’s already tweeted that any criticism of the government response is a “total lie.”

 

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Tuesday – Florence highlights to date

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Hurricane Florence - updated Tuesday 2018-09-18 11am• At least 32 people have died in storm-related incidents — 25 in North Carolina, 6 in South Carolina, and 1 in Virginia.

• About 500,000 homes and businesses are still without power, mostly in North Carolina and some in South Carolina.

• As of 5 a.m. Tuesday, Florence was a post-tropical cyclone. It was located about 105 miles west-northwest of New York City with maximum sustained winds of 25 mph, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) says.

• “The remnants of Florence are expected to produce heavy to potentially excessive rainfall through Tuesday,” NHC says. “Portions of the northern mid-Atlantic states northeast through southern New England are expected to receive an additional 1 to 2 inches of rain, with isolated maximum amounts of 4 inches possible.”

• The Cape Fear River is set to crest at 62 feet Tuesday.

• Nearly 36 inches of rain has fallen over Elizabethtown, North Carolina, reports CBS Raleigh affiliate WNCN-TV. Other towns have seen roughly 30 inches since Thursday.

Source: Express.co.uk
 

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Tuesday – Major flooding ravages Carolinas as Florence nears Vermont

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Florence - updated Tuesday 2018-09-18 8amFlorence continues to wreak destruction long after the worst of the storm has dissipated, with major flooding continuing to blast many areas of North and South Carolina.

Several large rivers and creeks have broken their banks, threatening homes with further damage after the tropical depression Florence, once a major hurricane, made landfall in North Carolina on Friday.

CNBC’s Contessa Brewer reported from Lumberton, North Carolina where the River Lumber had flooded to record levels.

She said: “The good news is that the Lumber River is receding, but it’s still running at 22 ft, that is well above flood stage by 13ft. It’s still running at record flood stage, the record previously was 21.8 ft. It’s not the only river of concern though, as the Cape Fear River — for Fayetteville especially that’s a massive concern — is already running at 58.9 ft.”

CNBC has estimated that damage from Hurricane Florence could total to over $22 billion, but the exact figure was uncertain “until the flooding is over.”

Florence has dumped up to 36 inches (91cm) of rain on the state since Thursday and the storm has already killed at least 23 people.

Days before the powerful storm reached the US East Coast officials issued mandatory evacuation orders for more than one million people.

Some residents chose to stay behind when the storm crashed into the Carolinas.

So far 23 deaths have been confirmed, six in South Carolina and 17 in North Carolina.

Mandatory evacuation orders are still active.

In Fayetteville, home to approximately 210,000, authorities told thousands of residents near the Cape Fear River and Little River to get out of their homes by Sunday afternoon because of the flood risk.

Mitch Colvin, Mayor of Fayetteville, North Carolina said: “If you are refusing to leave during this mandatory evacuation, you need to do things like notifying your legal next of kin because the loss of life is very, very possible. The worst is yet to come.”

Florence has continued to produce widespread heavy rains over much of North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina.

More than 641,000 (now down to an estimated ~500,000) homes and businesses were without electricity in North and South Carolina and surrounding states, down from a peak of nearly one million.

Sources: Express.co.uk & CNBC
 

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Monday – Florence highlights to date

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Hurricane Florence - updated Monday 2018-09-17 9am• At least 17 people have died, including a man and a woman in Horry County, S.C. who died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

• Approximately 523,000 homes and businesses are still without power in North and South Carolina as of 5 a.m. Monday.

• As of 5 a.m. Monday, Florence was a tropical depression, NOAA’s Weather Prediction Center said, with sustained winds of 30 mph.

• Wilmington, North Carolina, has been completely cut off by floodwaters and officials are asking for additional help from state law enforcement and the National Guard.

• Some weakening is expected today before Florence re-intensifies as it transitions to an extratropical cyclone tomorrow and Wednesday.

• Flash flood watches are in effect across much of North Carolina, northern South Carolina, and portions of Southwest Virginia.

 

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