Post Tagged with: "Hurricane Matthew"

Hurricane Gone, Floods Receding, Back to Development as Usual

October 1, 2018 4:34 AM
Hurricane Gone, Floods Receding, Back to Development as Usual

Horry County Council will consider third reading of a rezoning Tuesday night that would allow development of an anticipated 1,292 residential units plus some commercial space in the area of Old Buck Creek Rd. and Hwy 905 in rural Horry County.

The picture accompanying this story shows Buck Creek flooding Hwy 905 just south of this proposed development. A short distance downstream from the proposed development is the Aberdeen development that suffered considerable flooding that flowed over SC 9 closing that road for over one week. Several miles down Hwy 905 is the Polo Farms development that seriously flooded from the storm and suffers flooding during hard rainstorms.

The question must be asked, is this the time to approve a development of nearly 1300 homes to an area that is prone to flooding. Even if the property itself doesn’t flood after it is developed, do we really want 1300 new homeowners essentially cut off from the rest of the county when the next flood occurs.

And it’s not a question of if another flood of this type of magnitude will occur, but when. I can quickly think of three times in the last 19 years that SC 9 and Hwy 905 by Buck Creek have been cut off by floodwaters.

The county only developed a stormwater management plan after suffering the effects of Hurricane Floyd in 1999. It can be argued that county officials have been trying to catch up with controlling flooding and the effects of new development on various areas of the county ever since. Aberdeen, Polo Farms, Forestbrook and areas in Bucksport come quickly to mind.

Another consideration is the paucity of first responders in the area. The nearest fire station to this proposed development is an all-volunteer station with no career, full-time personnel attached. This area is part of the North Police Precinct, which is understaffed with a large area to patrol for those few officers available on each shift.

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Hurricane Break and Community Activist Bennie Swans

October 13, 2016 9:30 AM
Hurricane Break and Community Activist Bennie Swans

(Ed. Note – After a five day hiatus thanks to Hurricane Matthew including four days without electricity, the internet and cell phones, Grand Strand Daily is up and running again.)

The recent break because of Hurricane Matthew allowed me to gain new insight to local community activist Bennie Swans.

Not having all the benefits of modern world communications, I had the opportunity to catch up on some old fashioned reading from books, much of it by candlelight.

One extract I read, from “It Took Heroes, Volume II”, spoke about Bennie Swans during the time he spent in Vietnam in 1969 as a member of the U.S. Army.

Swans’ squad was ambushed in action on June 5, 1969. After squad leader, Sgt. Jack Hatfield, and point man Cpl. David Mann, were cut down by enemy fire, the following extract from an on the scene account by GI Larry McVay was quoted (page 155 of It Took Heroes, Vol. II):

“Jack and David were gut shot. David died instantly, Jack died slower…Benny Swans, a husky Black man and Hatfield’s assistant machine gunner, rushed forward…The rest of the 2nd Platoon and a few men from other platoons rushed forward to support Hatfield’s squad. Benny was like a man possessed – like John Wayne to me. Although being severely wounded, Benny poured accurate fire into the enemy positions and kept them at bay until our KIA’s and WIA’s were pulled back…”

I have been proud to call Bennie Swans a friend since I first met him after he moved to Horry County over 10 years ago. I knew Swans was a highly decorated veteran of the Vietnam War (several silver stars and purple hearts among his medals) but I never knew the specifics of any of the action he saw.

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Home Rule Loses to Gov. Nikki Haley

October 6, 2016 5:24 AM
Home Rule Loses to Gov. Nikki Haley

No more proof is needed that Home Rule is a myth in South Carolina than Gov. Nikki Haley’s State of Emergency declaration Tuesday.

With a few words, Haley eliminated county governments and school districts from decision making processes that should have been left in local hands.

Our so-called conservative politicians complain all the time about big government intrusion on people’s lives, but it’s all talk. The conservatives in South Carolina love to exercise that power as much as any politician.

Specifically, Haley closed county governments and school districts for three days beginning yesterday because of impending emergencies associated with Hurricane Matthew. That closure applied not only to coastal counties, but rather to all counties east of Columbia.

It made no difference that Matthew was around Haiti and Cuba at the time the state of emergency went into effect in South Carolina.

It made no difference that students went to school in Florida on Wednesday, a state that will be affected by Matthew at least 48 hours before any storm effects make it to Horry County, but stayed home locally by order of the governor.

It made no difference that future hurricane track predictions are notoriously subject to change.

Haley had an opportunity to jump on the national stage again and she took it, ignoring local officials in the process.

And, Haley’s emergency declaration is conflicting. According to county officials, it applies to county governments and school boards, but not to municipal governments

Over the last six years, we have seen Haley’s reaction whenever she perceives the federal government intruding on her executive powers, but she had no problem doing the same to local governments Tuesday.

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